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Rosie Little's Cautionary Tales for Girls Hardcover – July 13, 2007


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 255 pages
  • Publisher: MacAdam/Cage (July 13, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1596922524
  • ISBN-13: 978-1596922525
  • Product Dimensions: 0.9 x 5.6 x 7.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,348,744 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Linked anecdotes about the perils of young womanhood from Australian author Wood trendily play off of antediluvian diction and antiquated women's advice columns, but actually possesses some hard-won wisdom. Divided into themes such as virginity, truth, art, commitment, marriage and loss, the tales treat the predictable muddle of female experience, though in the feisty literary persona of not such a "good girl." Indeed, the first story, "The Deflowering of Rosie Little," finds the narrator, at 14, eager to look up Latin words in the dictionary used in sexual relations, losing her virginity in the most demeaning fashion at a party to a coarse lager lout who offers her a popular cocktail for girls called "Rene Pogel" (read it backward). In another wacky tale that goes off the rails into reality, "Rosie Little in the Mother Country," the narrator, now 17, is sent for a long visit to her childless godparents' house back in England, where the joyless, emotionally numbed couple finds Rosie's sexual vivacity unnerving and finally insupportable. Despite corny sidebars on penis sizes, pubic hairstyling, and "Nominative Determinism" (you are what you're named), Wood addresses real issues: domestic violence, abortion and the desire to be married with children, among others. What emerges is a sense of destiny for Rosie, a woman who works hard-as a newspaper reporter and an assistant purser on an American cruise ship, among other things-and senses intuitively that a life of heartstrings' unraveling is surely worth a pull or two.
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Review

"Rosie, a Little Red Riding hood type with lace-up Doc Martens instead of scones, narrates this story collection for the smart, strong female who can't help getting into trouble... Wood's prose reads as powerful, funny, and real... Rosie may have 'a difficult relationship with the word eclectic,' but that's what this book is. In a good way. Grade: A-" --Entertainment Weekly

"...emotionally pitch-perfect...[The stories] are funny and moving, and original enough to cover long-trampled territory like virginity and domestic abuse and seem new...get it and you'll have the smartes book at the beach." --Santa Cruz Sentinel

"Wood's collection of linked short stories makes a delightful trek through the life of bad girl Rosie Little...A clever and wickedly amusing character...Wood's writing is succinct, elegant, witty, and wonderfully suited to the form. Highly recommended." --Library Journal STARRED review

"...emotionally pitch-perfect...[The stories] are funny and moving, and original enough to cover long-trampled territory like virginity and domestic abuse and seem new...get it and you'll have the smartes book at the beach." --Santa Cruz Sentinel

"Wood's collection of linked short stories makes a delightful trek through the life of bad girl Rosie Little...A clever and wickedly amusing character...Wood's writing is succinct, elegant, witty, and wonderfully suited to the form. Highly recommended." --Library Journal STARRED review

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Amanda Richards HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on August 15, 2007
Format: Hardcover
According to Rosie's research, the aquiline noses that stick out snottily from the pages of numerous works of great fiction indicate a strong will, independence and the promise of prosperous mid-years. This, however, is no snotty work, and is not for perfect "girls" (and by "girls" I mean females between the ages of 16 and 120.) Nope, good little girls need read no further, because this book isn't for you.

These short and snappy, no nonsense stories cut straight to the good stuff - from the deflowering of a naïve maiden in a liaison more comical than dangerous (just ask Rene Pogel), to a bride defying logic in an attempt to make a good impression - Rosie Little's life journeys will strike you as funny, peculiar, poignant and bewitching, all at once.

Topics covered also include Truth (big girls and white elephants), Travel (tragic adventures in the English countryside), Beauty (a model romance), Art (Eve by the numbers), Love (who's afraid of the big, bad wolf?), Commitment (wax and wail), Work (spinning copy from rumor), Longing (romancing the stone), Loss (for the love of Kate) and finally, Destiny.

A great book for the times when a long reading session isn't in the cards, Rosie Little's Cautionary Tales for Girls explores hidden recesses of the female psyche without ever being preachy or boring.

Amanda Richards, August 15, 2007
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By Bookreporter on January 16, 2008
Format: Hardcover
The gothic, black-and-white, polka-dotted cover of Danielle Wood's new collection of interlocking short stories is, perhaps, the first clue that Rosie Little, the narrator and heroine of ROSIE LITTLE'S CAUTIONARY TALES FOR GIRLS, is not your ordinary Little Red Riding Hood. Wearing cherry red Doc Marten boots instead of dainty slippers, Rosie Little navigates her own deep, dark woods of success, romance and destiny by following a few ground rules and relying on help from the Shoe Goddess and maybe even a fairy godmother of her own.

Although Rosie's tales are "for girls," this is by no means a children's book. As Rosie herself notes, "these are tales for girls who have boots as stout as their hearts, and who are prepared to firmly lace them up (boots and hearts both) and step out into the wilds in search of what they desire." And desire --- fulfilled or unfulfilled --- is indeed at the heart of many of these stories. From Rosie's thoroughly unsatisfactory deflowering that opens the book, to Paula's disastrous proposal in "The Depthlessness of Soup," to a bridezilla's ludicrously misguided conception of herself in "Vision in White," unrealistic desires and expectations have a way of backfiring on those who harbor them.

Two of the stories included here --- "Elephantiasis" and "The True Daughter" --- have been featured in Best Australian Stories anthologies, and they do represent the strongest, most conventionally appealing tales in this collection. But Wood effectively integrates these stories into the other chapters, which, from "Virginity" to "Destiny," seem to trace the life cycle of the modern woman, in all its complexity, frustration and even (sometimes) joy.
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Format: Hardcover
I devoured Rosie Little. Its heroine, fictional Aussie lass Rosie Little, delivers these clever moral tales with spunk and wit. With her lace-up cherry red Doc Martens, Wood has created a new character than may inspire readers akin to Elphalba of Gregory Maguire's novel, 'Wicked.'
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Format: Hardcover
I bought this book for the cover and the first chapter combined. Not being a serious reader I was a bit surprised that I couldn't put the book down. Rosie Little's Cautionary Tales for Girls initially gave me the giggles. But very quickly I found Rosie's dark side, and found myself with a case of the heebie-jeebies.
The series of short stories is an incredible journey through womanhood. It leaves no painful story untold, and no tear unwept. Danielle Wood is an author to be honored.
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