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8: The Untold Story Paperback – March 20, 2014
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The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
REVIEW FOR the original story "8" Mullin begins this original retold fairy tale by reminding readers of its roots: oral tradition passed down through the generations. He simultaneously connects his audience with the rich history of retellings throughout the years and introduces a new chapter in that history. He invites the audience to become a part of that history with him by reading his story and reflecting upon what a true tale is is it, as the narrator suggests, what really happened, or is it something else entirely? Readers will probably detect truth in this tale not because they believe an eighth dwarf really belongs in the story, but because his presence adds a dimension to the story often forgotten in whitewashed versions: darkness exists and can be beaten, but it seldom allows a complete victory. Even as Mullin proposes to restore to the story of Snow White some of the original darkness, however, he calls to mind childhood versions of fairy tales by writing his in verse. The rhyming format mirrors nursery songs, giving to the story an air of familiarity even as the author introduces new elements. Darker themes such as lust and loss intertwine with the innocent recollections of childhood, giving readers the sense that the story has grown with them; once they knew only the whitewashed versions, but now they know the full account. This feels fitting and true since most know from experience that good and bad often mingle. The snarky observations made by Creepy from his vantage point in the basement add to the readers sense of participation in the tale. They work almost as asides from the author, saying You knew all along, or would have if you d thought about it, that this part of the story lacks some logic. But we ll go along with it. Such observations lend an air of levity to the retelling, reminding readers that, even with the darkness, this story is meant to be fun. An amusing retelling of Snow White, 8 stands apart from other such attempts with its wit and imagination. Though a quick read, it achieves surprising depth with its look at the role of fairy tales and the roles of the elements contained. Mullin paints the character of Creepy with sympathy despite his name, illustrating that good, as well as bad, can be found in unexpected places. This story will surely appeal to all those who love retold fairy tales. --Pages Unbound
REVIEW FOR the original story "8" This is a retelling of Snow White. In this story, there was an eighth dwarf called Creepy who was locked int he basement so he'd be out of sight and out of mind. He was disfigured and lived up to his name. Creepy tells us the story of what really happened. I enjoyed the story of 8th Dwarf. I felt bad for Creepy though because all he wanted was to be treated like a normal person and not like a criminal. He tries to save Snow White from the evil witch so many times, yet Snow White is too thick to realize that the witch is taking advantage of her. I enjoyed the rhyming, and I loved the font changes and little pictures during the story. I don't know if this is included in the ebook version, but it is in the paperback version. 8th Dwarf gets a 5 out of 5. --The (Mis)Adventures of a Twenty-Something Year Old Girl
REVIEW FOR the original story "8" I now have a new favorite dwarf. Forget Grumpy and Doc, give me Creepy instead! My 14-year-old son and I both got quite a kick out of this enlightening untold story of the 8th dwarf. I love stuff like this - when we get to see an alternate point-of-view of such a popular tale. Especially when it's a slightly twisted, humorous point-of-view. No, this isn't exactly for your little kid, but I think teens and adults will get a good laugh from it. It's a very quick, but very entertaining read. I'm in awe of the kind of mind that can come up with something like this, in verse. I wish my mind worked like that. Honestly, all of you must read this. You'll never be able to read Snow White again, without thinking of Creepy. --Christy Love of Books
About the Author
Michael Mullin is the author of the YA cult hit "TaleSpins" and the middle-grade novel "Rocketboy: The Return of Dr. Megaton." He has also co-authored several of the titles in the award-winning Larry Gets Lost™ picture book series. He lives in Pasadena, CA with his wife and their teenage twins.
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Top Customer Reviews
When I saw the summary on goodreads my first thoughts were "Really? COOL!" I've never heard of anything like this before. A short story written entirely in verse? So. Cool. And it's hard to do. I'd know, I had to attempt it once in a Creative Writing class. Not. Easy. I would like to hand Mr. Mullin a whole bag of kudos right now.
The story is of the 8th dwarf "Creepy" who is too much of an oddball for the rest of the dwarfs, so they lock him up in the basement. Well, wouldn't you know, one day as it's "Hi Ho Hi Ho off to work they go" someone barges in?! We're introduced to "the Maiden" and Creepy is convinced that she's a burglar, so when he realizes she's cleaning he tries to peek through the floorboards to have a look. This is where the "adult themes" start rolling in, which makes this all the better. It's nice to have fairy tales that are for young children but I think that it's unique for real adult themes to be present, for the older readers.
I think that it gives a new perspective to people in general actually. We're all familiar with the famous fairy tale kisses, but what really happens? We get an idea through this short story. Creepy ends up falling for the Maiden and helps her out in ways that she doesn't understand at first (I won't call Snow White, erm, the Maiden and airhead, it'd made me look bad,) but she completely takes him for granted.
By the end of the short story I was craving more, what happens after that? It kind of drops off suddenly, which is the only thing that I disliked, and that dislike is minimal to non-existent. I recommend this for older readers, although younger readers probably wouldn't pick up on the innuendos, but just to be safe, especially for those of you who like to keep track of what you're kids are reading. There's nothing explicit at all, just some minor "elbow nudges." You know, someone says something then nudges you with said elbow and famously says "Eh, eh?" This is usually accompanied with an eyebrow waggle and a wide smirk.
Creepy is the 8th dwarf sent to live in the cellar. He's the different one. The only dwarf that doesn't fit in with the others. And for a while, he stays hidden, until a lost maiden stumbles upon the dwarf's cottage and starts cleaning. (Guess who that is? :D) Well, Creepy just stares at the lady through the thin slits in the floorboard, wondering what the heck was wrong with her. He makes a couple of sexual innuendos from that point on.
And he stays hidden, until the evil queen stops by and tries to kill Snow White.
Creepy saves her.
The evil Queen stops by again and Snow White falls to her death again.
Creepy saves her.
The evil Queen stops by again and Snow White falls to her death for the third time. (You see the pattern here? I just love how the entire story is filled with dark humor).
Creepy saves her again.
But this time Snow White sees him and screams like a banshee.
So the moral of this story is: You can't judge someone by their appearance.
All I can say is that I was blown away. Not just by the smooth flow of the verse, but by how much the writing reminded me of Dr. Seuss. Dr. Seuss's writing was incredibly fun and even more exciting to read out loud, Michael Mullin has somehow inherited that same lively style that just keeps the reader entertained no matter what. He has this amazing ability to twist old fairy tales, making them darker and more maturer, and yet making them captivating at the same time.
I'm so happy I didn't let the chance to read this fly by.
I really recommend this one to everyone. It's a short, fun read that you definitely won't regret!
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