So you think you know the story of Little Red Riding Hood, the girl with the unfortunate name and the inability to tell the difference between her grandmother and a member of a different species? Well, then, try your hand at answering these questions: Which character (not including Little Red herself) is the most fashion challenged? Who (not including the wolf) is the scariest? Who (not including Granny) is the most easily scared? Who is the strangest? (Notice we’re not "not including" anyone, because they’re all a little off.) Who (no fair saying "the author") has stuffing for brains?
Vivian Vande Velde has taken eight new looks at one of the world’s most beloved (and mixed-up) stories. You may never look at fairy tales in quite the same way again.
©2012 Vivian Vande Velde (P)2012 Brilliance Audio, Inc.
These stories are hilarious. So is the introduction. As the author points out, if you think about this story, every line is worth a chuckle.
"What big eyes you have, Grandma."
Really? The kid notices size but not the fur, the claws, even the tail?
All the stories are clearly "Little Red Riding Hood," but every one is different. They range from just plain funny, to very surprising, to even kind creepy, to stand-up-and-cheer.
Can't say more without spoiling the twists and surprises--but I'm giving this to all my favorite family members who have a witty, wry, or snarky sense of humor.
When I drive, I read... uhm listen. I like SciFi, Fantasy, some Detective and Espionage novels and Religion. Now and then I will also listen to something else.
Vivian Vande Velde begins with a pithy critical assessment of the traditional Red Riding Hood story as known through the Brothers Grimm. She then re-imagines the story focussing on each character in the traditional story, thus telling and re-telling the story in various short stories. I think the idea is brilliant.
So why not give her 5 out of 5? Well, when it comes to collections of short stories, you always get better stories and lesser stories. This collection is no exception. Generally I enjoyed it... I can especially recommend the last story about the smart cloak, but there were a few very dull stories. Furthermore I expected the writer to understand the traditional Red Riding Hood story within its context. There is hidden eroticism, the idea of coming of age, chastity etc. that hides behind some of the elements in the story, at least that is what many scholars agree on. Where are those elements? It seems that Vivian Vande Velde missed them completely. Red Riding Hood is mostly a silly spoiled brat in her.
That said, Vande Velde came up with a few excellent tongue in the cheek moments filled with good humour. I recommend this book to anyone who wants to see the story in a different light and is in search for light reading.
I think Laural Merlington does a splendid job in reading the audio book. If you just want to relax and not think too much or need something to kill the time, this book might just be for you.
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