A Tale Dark & Grimm by Adam Gidwitz
A Tale Dark & Grimm #1
Release Date: October 28th, 2010
Number of Pages: 252
Publisher: Dutton Juvenile
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.
Okay, I have to be honest, I didn’t really know much about A Tale Dark & Grimm. I had picked a copy of its sequel (or companion novel, I’m not that sure) at BEA without knowing much about it, except it was about Grimm’s Tales. If there’s one thing that is true about me, it’s that I love the original (I have a bilingual version of the German version of the tales, with the English translation included.) This made me pretty excited to read this version of the tales.
The thing is, there were a little thing that really annoyed me in the book, which made it really hard for me to get into the story: The narrator’s addition to the story. The thing is I found it to make me unable to really get into the story. Every time the narrator stopped the story of Hansel and Gretel, I had trouble getting back into it, which made it harder for me to really enjoy the book.
The story itself was a great, but I would have preferred to have it on its own, without the interruption of the annoying narrator. I feel like I didn’t get as much as I wanted from the book, remembering mostly how annoyed I was by the interruption every few pages, instead of remembering Hansel and Gretel. I lost everything to that small element, and I personally couldn’t get over it, which is really sad. Because, I feel like if I reread it without stopping for his comments, I would really enjoy it. I’m actually tempted to do that for book two, because I still want to read it. And I’m not sure if knowing about that narrator will make it easier for me to get into the story, or if I should simply just ignore it and be safe.
Overall, it was far from love. I still know that many have loved it, and I think if you don’t mind the interruption (or if you can easily ignore it), you will enjoy it. Maybe in the future, I’ll be able to enjoy it if I reread it. Still, something I would recommend you check out if you enjoy this kind of books. Some will like it, others won’t.