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The Goose Girl (The Books of Bayern, #1)
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Christine (chrisarrow) | 1388 comments Mod
A place to discuss the book with spoilers.


Christine (chrisarrow) | 1388 comments Mod
So I couldn't finish it, and it was more me than the author. The thing that really annoyed me (and maybe because I didn't finish it, Hale does something that brings the story back to this) is Hale changing it from a version of Cinderella in that the mother helps the daughter to the standard girl gets along better with men than women. (I also found Ani really annoying. I don't see how she was prepared to be a crown princess in anyway).

I also always saw Faleda as a mare for some reason.

(The hang ups are mind, not Hale's. )


Siareen | 35 comments I didn't really understand your post. Could you maybe explain what you mean?

Personally I really liked this book and the rest of the series. Not only is it well written, I liked how the author took the slightly less known tale of "The Goose Girl" and decided to work with that. I think I had heard of the tale before, but this book made me read it for the first time. I appreciated the book much more after I understood exactly what the author did to explain the fairy tale.


Siareen | 35 comments I didn't really understand your post. Could you maybe explain what you mean?

Personally I really liked this book and the rest of the series. Not only is it well written, I liked how the author took the slightly less known tale of "The Goose Girl" and decided to work with that. I think I had heard of the tale before, but this book made me read it for the first time. I appreciated the book much more after I understood exactly what the author did to explain the fairy tale.


Christine (chrisarrow) | 1388 comments Mod
In the original tale, the princess is protected by the spirit of her mother. There is the handkerchief and the horse, which are both linked with the mother. This is much the same way that the helper (the godmother, the fish) in Cinderella helps Cinderella. To me, or for me, changing this violated the tale too much.

I will note, however, I can see Hale is well liked and recieved. I should also note that I am older than the intended audience, and had I read the book at a younger age, I think I would've like it much more.


Katie (Rosepixie) | 30 comments Chris, I agree with you. I really had a hard time with this book and really disliked it a lot. I did finish it (and I have liked other books by Hale), but I think it was more because I made myself than anything.

Ani bothered me a lot as well. A big part of why I disliked this book so much was that she was so unwilling to do anything for herself for the vast majority of the book. I felt like she was waiting for her mother, her horse, something to sweep in and fix everything, make some happy ending she hadn't even the backbone to dream of yet. And you know what? Reading about someone waiting and feeling sorry for themselves is boring and irritating and really just not that much fun.

What I like about the fairy tale The Goose Girl is that the heroine's helpers are all helping, but also somewhat unarmed by the villainess. Even with the help, the handkerchief and the horse, the heroine still has to help herself stand out, has to be remarkable on her own and find her own voice to stand up and tell her own story.

Ani was not that heroine. She just waited. By the time Ani figured it out and pulled herself together, she'd already lost me and I no longer wanted her to get her happy ending. I didn't want her to lose, per say, I just kind of resented her for wasting so much time.

So, I totally appreciate why you say that it felt like Cinderella at the beginning and why you didn't like it because I felt the same way.


Christine (chrisarrow) | 1388 comments Mod
Have you read Book of a Thousand Days? Did you like it?


Katie (Rosepixie) | 30 comments Chris wrote: "Have you read Book of a Thousand Days? Did you like it?"

Yes, actually I loved that one. I felt like it had more interesting characters and Hale did a great job of keeping the story going even when there was not much action happening.


Beth I totally missed anything do to with Cinderella when I read this (it has been a few months), so could you refresh my memory as to what aspects were like Cinderella??


message 10: by Beth (new) - rated it 5 stars

Beth Chris wrote: "Have you read Book of a Thousand Days? Did you like it?"

I really enjoyed that one!


Moriah | 12 comments Chris wrote: "Have you read Book of a Thousand Days? Did you like it?"

I LOVED that one!


Moriah | 12 comments Katie wrote: "Ani bothered me a lot as well. A big part of why I disliked this book so much was that she was so unwilling to do anything for herself for the vast majority of the book. I felt like she was waiting for her mother, her horse, something to sweep in and fix everything, make some happy ending she hadn't even the backbone to dream of yet. And you know what? Reading about someone waiting and feeling sorry for themselves is boring and irritating and really just not that much fun..."

I find it interesting that you feel that way. For me, I liked how Shannon Hale portrayed Ani because that is what most people would be like... except she found the strength within herself to fight her demons. Most people don't, so her character gives hope to those who are struggling with their own demons. And what is fantasy for, but to give hope to those who have none? So I what I'm saying is that I felt that ani's character was more realistic, and therefore easier to connect with.


Lauren (lauren0924) | 6 comments Moriah wrote: "Katie wrote: "Ani bothered me a lot as well. A big part of why I disliked this book so much was that she was so unwilling to do anything for herself for the vast majority of the book. I felt like s..."

Agree! I really liked this book!


Christine (chrisarrow) | 1388 comments Mod
Beth wrote: "I totally missed anything do to with Cinderella when I read this (it has been a few months), so could you refresh my memory as to what aspects were like Cinderella??"

Not so much in the novel, but in the original tale. Both the horse and the hankerchief function like the tree or godmother or fish (or cow, lion, whatever) in Cinderella. That is the helper character who takes the place of the mother.


message 15: by Beth (last edited Jun 08, 2012 01:31PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Beth Oh, okay...I didn't catch that similarity at all because to me in the novel, Ani's mother didn't really seem like she was a helper character at all. Plus, I've read a lot of tales that there was an item or an animal that seemed like a helper, so it didn't distinctly come across to be connected to the original tale of Cinderella, but I'm not very knowledgable of the original tale to be honest. I think of the standard Disney type Cinderella story when I think of Cinderella, which features the godmother, haha...and I suppose the mice could be considered animal helpers as well.


message 16: by Beth (new) - rated it 5 stars

Beth I think I just focused way more on the part where she was a goose girl, not a princess. I didn't really like her character at first because she was such a pansy--I just wanted her to stick up for herself. But for me, by the end of the story, that was the point. She found courage to stand up for herself even without the title of princess to fall back on.


message 17: by Grauzone (last edited Jul 10, 2012 04:46AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Grauzone | 2 comments Wow, I was just browsing through my groups, and here you're discussing this book ... I just finished The Goose Girl, so here's my two coins. *g*

I like how Hale uses elements of the original story and gives them another meaning. Like there's the scene in the fairy tale when Conrad watches Ani wash her hair or something and we don't really know why she doesn't want him to see her like that. It's interesting how these little things are explained and turned into something that's so important to the story (the "yellow girl").

The writing could have been better; it took me some time to get into it. And unfortunately, I still remembered much of the original plot and knew who a certain male character must be from the moment he showed up (I'd only recently watched a film adaption of the fairy tale on tv).

I guess I most enjoyed the scenes with Selia, you really love to hate her. *g*

What confused me at first is that the author uses "Bayern" (=Bavaria) as a place name in a made-up fantasy world. It just sounds too familiar if you're German and I would still like to know what Hale was thinking. ;-)


Christine (chrisarrow) | 1388 comments Mod
Maybe that's where she got the idea, a slight change and viola?


Candace Pettit | 28 comments The versions of the Goose Girl story I've read don't involve a mother figure inhabiting the horse's head. And I've never really likened those to Cinderella all that strongly. So I loved this adaptation.


message 20: by Mir (new) - rated it 3 stars

Mir | 70 comments Grauzone, I wondered too if that was an attempt to imply a German-ish setting.


Grauzone | 2 comments Yes, probably. And that desert country in the South sounds like something from "Arabian Nights" (I just finished "Enna Burning").


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