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Black Swan, White Raven and millions of other books are available for instant . anthology series that invites modern authors to rewrite classic fairy tales. with some relative newcomers to create a collection that is as diverse as it is unique.
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Fairy Tales Retold | Williamsburg Regional Library

Add to Cart. Free delivery. Arrives by Thursday, Oct Pickup not available. Product Highlights Such authors as Joyce Carol Oates, Jane Yolen, and John Crowley deftly uncover the ironic, the outrageous, the enigmatic, and the erotic at the core of the world's best-known fables. About This Item We aim to show you accurate product information.

Manufacturers, suppliers and others provide what you see here, and we have not verified it. See our disclaimer. In their fourth collection of original adult fairy tales written by some of the premier names in literature today, World Fantasy Award-winning editors Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling transport readers deep into an enchanted forest with a stunning array of magical stories - bringing us the princes and ogres, charms and bewitchings, castles, cottages and secret gardens of fervent imagination.

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See more. Written by a customer while visiting librarything. Average rating: 4 out of 5 stars, based on 0 reviews. Moors, November 15, Like the wizards who roam through enchanted woods, the tales themselves are shape-shifters: elusive, mysterious, mutable, capable of wearing many different forms. This fact is at the core of their power, and is the source of their longevity. It is also what makes them such useful tools to the modern writer of fantasy fiction.

A true fairy tale is, to my mind, very like the sonata, said the nineteenth-century fantasy writer George McDonald.

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If two or three men sat down to write each what the sonata meant to him, what approximation to definite idea would result? A fairy tale, a sonata, a gathering storm, a limitless night, each seizes you and sweeps you away. A century later, J. Tolkien compared fairy tales to the bones from which a savory broth is extracted. Each storyteller dips his or her ladle into that bubbling cauldron of soup, and then uses it as the base of a dish individually spiced and flavored.

The soup has been simmering for centuries—there are no cooks we can credit as the originators of the first fairy tales; there is no single version of each tale we can point to as definitive. Each of these well-known fairy tales is based upon themes that are universal. The earliest known versions of Cinderella, for instance, date back to ancient China; one finds her in the Middle East, in Africa, and even here in North America in such stories as The Rough-Faced Girl told by the Algonquin tribe.

While the flavor of each tale might change according to the culture, the times, and the teller, the core of the tale remains the same—because at their core, these are stories that speak of the most basic elements of the human condition: fear, courage, greed, generosity, cruelty, compassion, failure, and triumph. As a result, their themes are as relevant today as they were back in centuries past. The old tales of the oral tradition have been entwined with written literature since at least the sixteenth century, when Straparola published his magical, bawdy The Delectable Nights in Venice.

These were all works written and published for educated adult audiences—for it was not until Victorian times that fairy tales came to be considered stories specifically meant for children. A look at the older fairy tales quickly disabuses us of this notion. Pre-Victorian tales were more ambiguous, more violent, more sensual or downright bawdy, and unflinching in their portrayal of the complexities of the human heart. The Armless Maiden is one such tale, of a girl brutally maimed by her own parents; Donkeyskin is another, with its frankly incestuous theme of a king determined to marry his own daughter despite her protestations and despair.

In older versions of fairy tales, such acts were not foisted off on wicked stepparents ; these were the acts of the parents themselves: of kings who are less than wise; and millers who are less than strong; of queens, housewives, and sisters slowly simmering with rage. In the universe of fairy tales, the Just often find a way to prevail, the Wicked generally receive their comeuppance. But a close look at the stories reveals much more than a simple formula of abuse and retribution.

The trials our heroes encounter in their quests illustrate the process of transformation: from youth to adulthood, from victim to hero, from a maimed state into wholeness, from passivity to action. As centuries of artists have known, this gives fairy tales a particular power: not as a quaint escape from the harsh realities of modern life, but in their symbolic portrayal of all the dark and bright life has to offer.

In our century, fantasy writers and modern poets are the artists who speak this symbolic language best, using timeless themes and potent archetypes to comment on modern life. The late Angela Carter is a writer who has done this more thoroughly, more beautifully, than any other, particularly in the adult fairy-tale stories of her collection The Bloody Chamber. The poet Anne Sexton worked brilliantly with fairy-tale themes in her luminous collection Transformations. Margaret Atwood, A.

Byatt, John Gardner, Marina Warner, and Sara Maitland are all writers who have used fairy-tale motifs for works published in the literary mainstream; while in the fantasy genre, Robin McKinley, Tanith Lee, Jonathan Carroll, Delia Sherman, Jane Yolen, and others have written works of adult fairy-tale literature as fine as any on the mainstream shelves. Like the authors above, the writers in this volume have taken the themes of classic fairy tales and reworked them into stories of their own: stories that are both old and new, both bright as white ravens, dark as black swans.

Why do so many of us continue to be enspelled by fairy tales? Why do we continue to tell the same old tales, over and over again? Because we all have encountered wicked wolves, faced trial by fire, found fairy godmothers. We have all set off into unknown woods at one point in life or another.

Such stories have been told, retold, passed on from mouth to mouth for thousands of years. The stories that follow are part of a tradition that is as old as storytelling itself. Michael Cadnum lives in northern California and is a poet and novelist. He is the author of eleven novels including St. My beautiful bride said if you spend all your time fishing the river, you catch nothing but monkfish and bream.

You get water wens all over your feet. If you want money, she said, you go sea fishing. Most of those belly-up clinker-builts belong to dead fishermen, their bodies feeding crabs, and everybody knows it.

Terri Windling

It keeps the prices down, but I decided to be a beach fisher, and I had some luck. You have to take the long view. You like whelks, you eat whelks. Eight, nine you have supper.

Yanni, my rose-cheeked wife, would say, All day out there, and you come home with what? That lovely mouth of hers, working nonstop. I have six fine cockles, I would say. Or, if the tide had run well, two fine whiting. Or two soles, or John Dory, or a dozen pier mussels. Whatever it was, and they were always prime. You can use one of those mallets especially made for shutting fish up, head hammers, the dorymen around here call them in their usual jocular way, but about the only thing you can say to a fish is nothing.

Tourists love it. We put on these wooden mud-treaders, and you can hear them calling to their kids, Look, how darling, wooden shoes. And I, for one, always wave and smile. You bother to catch one pilchard, Weebs, you might as well catch a hundred, my wife would say. Always sewing, needle winking up and down.

Skirts, blouses, collars, gloves. I might as well be a herring gull you come back with such tiny little fish. It takes a lot to maneuver the net with just two arms, I would answer. You need a strong back and a feel for the current. A rare genius. You ought to win a prize for being able to work for less money than anyone who ever scraped mud.

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Eels have two hearts, I would say. They crawl over land. They have conventions in the ocean, they have nests in the hills. An eel is too complicated to eat. I like pilchards. You can hold a fish like that in your hand.

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Catch something worth the effort, she would reply. Bored, having given up on me. She would walk into a room making announcements saying she was cold, I would be late for high tide, why was it so dark, where was her darning.