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Poison (Tales from the Kingdoms Book 1) Kindle Edition
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“Dark, erotic retellings that mix familiar plot arcs with sexual content and disturbing twists...well-written and engaging” - VG Blogger --This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.
About the Author
- File size : 886 KB
- Publication date : March 31, 2015
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 209 pages
- Lending : Not Enabled
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Language: : English
- ASIN : B00JNPFC60
- Screen Reader : Supported
Best Sellers Rank:
#211,858 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- #291 in Arthurian Fantasy (Books)
- #593 in Fantasy Anthologies & Short Stories (Kindle Store)
- #770 in Fairy Tales (Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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One thing that I did like was the way the author overlapped the Snow White story with other stories (including Aladdin and Hansel and Gretel).
Two things spoiled the story for me. The gratuitous sex of the queen and Snow White with the Huntsman and the contemporary profanity. Both popped me out of "fairy tale" mode and neither really added anything to the story.
One aspect the writer does well is with the queen. The evil queen has depth, we see how she falls into her hateful, if not justified, feelings towards Snow.
Top reviews from other countries
Some interesting foreshadowing going on throughout this tale as well, or maybe that should be PRE-shadowing, as I get the feeling although this is the first in a trilogy of fairy tale re-telling's, it is not the first chronologically. All I'm saying is I think the Huntsman and the Prince are important characters and might well link these three tales together.
But just as the story goes, once you have delved beyond the glamour and perfection of the surface, all manners of grotesque and shocking things lurk beneath. S.P. takes quite a few risks here, eschewing a predictable retelling of the tale in a contemporary setting, and instead bravely taking us right back into the fairytale world, yet creating a very modern version within the walls of that castle and enchanted forest. She plays with the theme of female beauty and the prowess and privilege it bestows within the traditional tale, but tackles head-on the issues surrounding that theme, and the price that is paid for such a false value. The bitter is sweetened with humour and cleverness in her references to other fairy-tales that weave into the story effortlessly.
However, S.P.'s greatest triumph, as I see it, is how she has rescued the female characters from the realm of one-dimensional cut-outs and fleshed them into believable beings. Here we have women with a past and personalities and solid motivations - not to mention sexualities. Whilst I think the sex element isn't as prevalent a part of the story as many other reviewers seem to feel it is, the roles of the Queen and Snow White as "Vamp versus Virgin" are certainly challenged and changed here. With a nod to the folkloric origins of the story, S.P. cleverly uses elemental descriptions to portray the differences in how the two women relate to the world, and to their lovers. The queen's evil is no longer all rage and lust, any more than Snow's goodness is all sweetness and light. A more subtle and convincing story is told here, of one woman in touch with her heart and soul, and one who is not. The envy that binds this classic fairy-tale - as surely as the glamorous covers bind this brilliant version - stems from this difference, rather than the beauty both women equally possess.
A delicious poison, indeed. Take a bite.
There are no clichés here. The Queen's wickedness is fleshed out from a character so rich in depth as to feel sympathy on occasion. The dwarfs daily life and characteristics read like real working people in this fantasyland; altruistic in their relationship with Snow White.
Along came a handsome Prince: I've always found something creepy in the notion of pinning over an unknown, inanimate princess for her beauty alone. It's an idealised image of a woman in a glass case, re-animated into a person compliant and as pure as her skin. The twist near the end is disturbing as this situation unfolds.
Snow White herself is indeed beautiful, loyal and can drink and be merry with the best of them. This is a contemporary Snow White; fiercely independent and comfortable with her own sexuality. There's a very sensual scene in this book that not only feels naturalistic but also serves to further character behaviour and motive.
Wonderfully written and interwoven with recognisable characters, it's a fresh take on this fairytale with strong female characters battling against their environment. At 200 pages, no word has been wasted in this wickedly sinister tale.
I'd recommend the HB if possible as the publisher, Gollancz, have provided much care, with beautiful illustrations by Les Edwards, and a shimmering cover that an image cannot convey. Confidently written: Poison shows an author right at the top of their profession.
I enjoyed the re-telling of the story very much, as an adult it was much more statisfying to read this version!
The story felt a little flat to me and when watching it in my head the pictures were almost 2D and a little dull. I don't know whether this was due to the nature of the book - it being a shorter novel and me being used to epic serie or whether it was the writing style.
I didn't give it 5 stars because I found it easy to put down - it didn't make me want to spend that extra 10 minutes reading.