A Tale Dark and Grimm
by Adam Gidwitz
In this mischievous and utterly original debut, Hansel and Gretel walk out of their own story and into eight other classic Grimm-inspired tales. As readers follow the siblings through a forest brimming with menacing foes, they learn the true story behind (and beyond) the bread crumbs, edible houses, and outwitted witches.
Fairy tales have never been more irreverent or subversive as Hansel and Gretel learn to take charge of their destinies and become the clever architects of their own happily ever after. (description taken from Amazon.com)
I am amazed that this is Gidwitz's debut novel. His nod to the Grimm brothers is clearly evident in the gruesome traditional stylings of the fairy tales found here, but the clever melding of one into another to make one long, harrowing journey for Hansel and Gretel is so well done and original.
Though this is not my favorite fairy tale retelling, partially because I just am not as fond of the traditional Hansel and Gretel tale as some others, the tone of the book is amazing. The narrator repeatedly cautions readers to take small children out of the room, taunts readers with "The End...sort of..." over and over, and generally adds a witty humor to the dark, creepy, bloody tales.
For anyone who enjoys a good, cautionary tale this would be the next book to check out!