The Forgotten Fairytales by Angela Parkhurst
(Website, Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads)Series: The Forgotten Fairytales #1
on February 1st 2014
Genres: Dating & Sex, Fairy Tales & Folklore, Fairy Tales, Folk Tales, Legends & Mythology, Family, Love & Romance, Romance, Siblings, Suicide, Young Adult, Young Adult Fiction
Once upon a time, seventeen-year-old Norah Hart believed in the lure of fairytales and happily ever afters. That was before she was forced to live in a fairy tale nightmare.
A psychotic, couture-clad, shoe obsessed Princess.
A not-so-charming, alcoholic Prince.
A hot Big Bad Wolf that she absolutely cannot fall for—no matter how well he kisses.
If Norah had known she’d be attending a boarding school for the nut job reincarnations of fairy tale characters, she would have insisted on going to Moscow with her father. But getting out isn’t as easy as she thought. Especially once Norah realizes she, too, is a storybook character. An Unknown. The first one in over one hundred years. Soon Norah learns she has the ability to rewrite the stories, putting everyone’s Happily Ever After in jeopardy.
Some princesses will do whatever it takes to protect their endings. Even if it means betraying the one closest to you.
I love fairytales, always have and always will, especially the variations over the years. The Forgotten Fairytales instantly had my attention. The Grimm Brothers’, Hans Christian Anderson’s, and other writers’ original dark tales without the happily-ever-afters are exciting and different than the stuff that Disney gave the world. Retellings are great, but this didn’t sound quite like that, and the story beckoned me.
Norah Hart was a transient soul. Her dad constantly moved her and her sister, April, from place to place. Norah loved the travel, but her sister wanted something more permanent. Their relationship had its problems from the first page, and some of their interactions shocked me. April hated Norah with a ferocity that was slightly terrifying. It had a fairytale-like feel, half sisters that didn’t get along, one that tried over and over again to create a connection that just wasn’t going to happen and the other that insisted life would be better without the other’s shadow hiding her from the light. While the dynamic wasn’t healthy, it added to the story, and I think Parkhurst did a wonderful job of leaving them at a point so that a sequel is necessary.
One of my favorite parts of fairytales is the romance. There were some moments, specifically at the beginning, that were too fast. I would have liked the story to have been drug out a bit more. I knew Norah and Wolf had a connection, and I could sense that she and Finn had some weird something or another going on, but I needed a little more build-up. Either way, I found myself sucked in. I started smiling at random moments without realizing it and devoured the kissing scenes. Wolf holds my heart, and I’m practically itching to know where he and Norah will end up in their relationship.
I’ve listened to the audiobooks of the first two books in The School for Good and Evil series and thought there would be a lot of similarities, but there weren’t. The Forgotten Fairytales had a new spin on the old fairytales instead of creating a whole new set of them. Each of the stories that I grew up with—Cinderella, Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid, Red Riding Hood, etc.—were reincarnated. I enjoyed guessing who was who, since everyone sort of had his or her own identity. Parkhurst questioned fate versus free will in timeless fiction, as if the characters were forced into a mold they didn’t quite fit. I want to know more, and I will definitely be reading the next book.
Overall, I really enjoyed reading The Forgotten Fairytales. I did have some issues with some of the dialogue and had to get accustomed to Norah’s inner dialogue, as I didn’t think it all fit her character at the beginning. As I got used to her, it made more sense, but there were still a few sentences here and there that stuck out. Though, because I enjoyed the story and plot so much, by the end the few idiosyncrasies didn’t matter at all. If you’re a fairytale lover and Grimm Brothers buff like myself, this is the book for you. I read most of it in a day and only stopped because it was getting a tad late and I needed sleep. It had suspense, romance, and a dash of the age-old storybooks that are tucked away in the corners of your favorite library or on the top of your shelves.
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