We used to live in a small compound in Pasay City where I had my immediate relatives as neighbors. Inside my lolo's (grandfather) home was a small library of sorts housing a modest collection of hard leather-bound titles, a remnant of my mom and her sibling's childhood days. I was around 4 or 5 years old when I discovered these books and although I still had yet to learn to read, I'd visit the room again and again, just looking at the wonderful pictures and smelling their musty old scents.
Our old home was a wooden, post-war dwelling and as expected, eventually succumbed to the wrath of termites. Among the casualties were my beloved books. Alice in Wonderland was actually the first to go. The others slowly, and painfully, experienced a similar fate.
Out of all the titles in that old room, I was only able to save one; a collection of Hans Christian Andersen's fairy tales that have since been in my possession ever since.
Thus, did my love for fairy tales began, which eventually led me to purchase this book -- My Mother She Killed Me, My Father He Ate Me: Forty New Fairy Tales written by various contemporary fiction writers and edited by Kate Bernheimer.
|My Mother She Killed Me, My Father He Ate Me: Forty New Fairy Tales|
My Mother She Killed Me, My Father He Ate Me: Forty New Fairy Tales is a collection of new fairy tales written by today's well-known writers. Their stories are highly influenced by the tales of long ago and aims to bring a more modern twist on our well-loved narratives. (Read the full summary here at Amazon.com.)
I don't consider myself a purist; I do love re-imaginings and re-takes of old popular stories (my current obsession is with the numerous Pride and Prejudice variations. Reviews to come in future posts.); but I must admit, this would be the first time I've read a remake of my beloved fairy tales.
Did I like it? Hmmm... a little, I guess. It was interesting to see just how twisted (as if the old ones weren't deranged enough already) fairy tales can become when placed in a more modern setting. I know the old stories were violent and gory to scare children from bad people and events; and these modern retellings are just as nasty and crazy. Definitely not a book you'd read to your kids.
I use the word "retelling" loosely here. Don't expect the stories to closely resemble your beloved tales; although they are highly influenced by the old narratives.
All in all, I say this is one interesting read. Lovers of contemporary fiction novels would surely love to add this to their collection.