Ahh! The Big Book of Twisted Fairy Tales by Sue Nicholson and illustrated by Flavia Sorrentino was so damn cute! Not only was this a children’s book that supports diversity, with the characters of Jack from Jack and the Beanstalk and Snow from Snow White as people of color, which is something I can’t help being thoroughly excited to scream about, but also has a bunch of different messages to teach young kids with all their favorite fairy tales of the past and I am so here for this. Granted, I think these messages are sent all the time, but I love the format through which the author decided to teach them to the kids out there and I am also always overly eager to get my hands on fairytale retellings.
I do somewhat think the title is kind of misleading since I do picture something entirely different for the word “twisted” that does not have to do with good, exactly. I imagine twisted to represent a sort of awful change–in a good way–to an original story. In the case of this book, the twist is really just that the characters are a lot more realistic and relatable to your average child. There aren’t really princesses, but Cinderella’s family is poor and hardworking. Social class doesn’t thoroughly separate friends, but Beauty’s family is fairly well off. Jack’s family kind of owns a farm and Snow White loves soccer. Also, there is no fairy godmother, but rather just a plain old godmother for the children who is present in each of their stories.
Speaking of stories, this children’s book gives you four of them! One for each of the four characters I mentioned above, each one focusing on different messages from kindness to responsibility and good behavior to being a team player. And while, personally, I find realistic stories aren’t exactly my cup of tea, I can definitely say that I see a lot of children really relating to and feeling a resonance with the stories collected in this adorable little book. And best of all, the artwork is the perfect mix of cute and simple, reminding me a bit of some of the popular children’s shows out nowadays.
All in all, this is definitely a book to have on your radar, especially if you or your children love fairy tales!
I was provided a free copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.