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A Fairy Tale Life

April is Hans Christian Anderson’s birth month. If you are unfamiliar with who he is, Hans is the author of many popular fairy tales like The Ugly Duckling, The Little Mermaid, Thumbelina, and The Snow Queen (the story that Frozen is partially based on). While he was mostly considered a children’s author, he and I share the same belief that fairy tales are for everyone, no matter their age. So join me in wishing Hans a Happy 212th birthday by reading some modern retellings of his classic stories especially made for a YA and adult audience. 


Snow Queen

Cold Spell by Jackson Pearce

Kai and Ginny have been best friends forever, and now that they are seventeen, their friendship has evolved into something more. But when a mysterious and cold stranger named Mora lures Kai away, it will be up to Ginny to save him on an adventure that will have her facing all manner of fantastical dangers.

The Ice Queen by Alice Hoffman

A small-town librarian is struck by lightning in a freak accident that leaves her with cold powers and a frozen heart. When she learns of a man that was also struck, she seeks him out only to learn that he is her complete opposite, burning while she freezes. As sparks fly, the two will discover what has led to their new powers.

Stork by Wendy Delsol

After her parents’ divorce, Katla and her mother move from the big city to rural Minnesota. Not only is it a major cultural change, but she is also inducted into the Aslendigas Storkur Society. As a “stork” it is up to her and the other members of the order to choose which vessels (babies) to put new souls in and which mothers they will be granted to. On top of all of that, she has all of the troubles of any normal teenager that is starting over in a new town, including a regrettable fling with the school jock and an unexpected connection with a local farm boy.

Stealing Snow by Danielle Paige

Snow and her best friend Bale have been patients at their New York Psychiatric Hospital for a long time. Snow knows that she isn’t crazy but it doesn’t change the fact that she is trapped, until one day when Bale is kidnapped through a mirror. Snow mounts a rescue mission and follows him through the mirror to a world full of impossible magical things. Here she learns about a past that she has forgotten, becomes a critical part of an uprising, and will risk everything to try and find the boy she loves.

The Wild Swans

Spinning Starlight by R.C. Lewis

As the heiress to one of the most powerful families in the galaxy, Liddi is used to the paparazzi following her around at all times. So when strange men show up at her house she thinks they are nothing but paparazzi, until they attack. Liddi is able to escape the kidnappers but not before her captor manages to implant a device in her vocal chords. Her brothers are not so fortunate. Even with her freedom, if Liddi so much as says a word, her brothers who are still captive will be the one who suffer. Now it is up to Liddi to travel across the galaxy and find help for her brothers and herself; but will anyone listen to her when she can’t even speak?

Ugly Duckling

The Sweetest Spell by Suzanne Selfors

Emmeline Thistle has never been more than a poor dirt-scratcher’s daughter, and after a massive flood wipes out her village, she is less than that. She is all alone. But when she discovers her magical new gift, everyone will want her, whether she wants them to or not.

The Little Mermaid

September Girls by Bennett Madison

After his dad packs his family up and moves them to a small beach town one summer, Sam is faced with a bevy of blonde girls that all seem to have eyes only for him. But, there is much more to the situation than meets the eye.

Monstrous Beauty by Elizabeth Fama

Over a century ago, a young mermaid name Syrenka fell in love with a land dwelling naturalist named Ezra. When she decides to give up her live underwater to live on land, she has no idea that her decision will have consequences that will ripple into the future. Today, Hester is a young teen with a tragic family history where all of the females in her family die when they fall in love. After meeting an alluring boy named Ezra, Hester embarks on a mission to save herself and figure out what has been plaguing her family for so long.

Mermaid: A Twist on a Classic Tale by Carolyn Turgeon

In this tale, two princesses and one prince are inextricably tied together by fate. Lenia, a mermaid princess, rescues a prince from drowning and delivers him to the shores of Princess Margrethe’s home. Margrethe sees in him a chance to finally help her war torn kingdom, while Lenia, sees in him, her future. Whoever can win over the Prince will have their heart’s desire and whoever loses will be left with nothing.

Between the Sea and Sky by Jaclyn Dolamore

This new take on the Little Mermaid has a mermaid named Esmerine who is perfectly happy with her life under the sea. In fact she wants to be just like her siren sister Dosinia. When Dosinia goes missing though, Esmerine goes in search of her with the help of her old friend Alandare, a man that is not from the land, but instead from the sky.

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