Did the title of this blog post give you déjà vu? If so, then you know that I’ve already nerded out once before about adaptations. What can I say, they’re a fun genre that I can’t resist. But I’ve scratched the smallest surface of the genre. Last time, I spun a tale of my history with mythology adaptations. Today, it’s time to jump back down the adaptation rabbit hole. I wanted to nerd out over my first literary adaptation love: fairytale adaptations.
Like many kids, I grew up reading fairy tales. My personal favorites were Grimm’s fairy tales. I loved the countless little stories about animals, heroes, and magical creatures. My childhood book of fairy tales had a worn spine by the time my sister and I got older. Even as a 25-year-old, I still have a book full of the complete Grimm’s fairy tales. But I did go through a phase where the traditional fairy tales seemed a bit stale. Sure, I loved the classics, but there are so many times that you can reread The Golden Goose. During that time, I began to notice a lot of fairytale adaptations entering the reading scene. There was Y.A. rom-com adaptations, more adult takes, and the classic “dark-retelling” of some classic tales.
One of the first adaptations I remember reading was Cinderellis and the Glass Hill by Gail Carson Levine. It was a fun twist on the story of Cinderella, with some elements of other stories sprinkled in with a bit of humor. Levine has done many other fairytale adaptations, like Ella Enchanted and Fairest. Her versions of these classic tales made me interested in the art of storytelling. When I was older, books like Geek Charming introduced me to a fun and quirky way to retell some of my favorite fairy tales.
Reading these stories excited me because of the creativity involved. Sure, these stories aren’t new, but it’s so fun to see where the twist comes in. Sometimes it’s witty humor or a deep sense of world-building. Or it could be genderbent characters and modern settings. These elements give fresh life to the stories, and even expand on some parts of the original tales. You could read the banter of characters interacting who are from different stories. Or you could enjoy a steampunk version of a classic story. The possibilities are endless!
One day, I want to write my own fairy tale adaptation with a twist. In the meantime, I’m delving into interesting fairy tales from many different cultures. It’s so fun to learn about the folklore of these parts of the world. I also love seeing how iconic stories translate in different cultures. What is your favorite fairy tale that you’d love to see adapted in some way? What’s your favorite fairy tale adaptation? Let me know in the comments below! I’m excited to hear your thoughts, and hopefully learn about some new tales. Happy reading everyone!