Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine
Retold fairytales, in which the characters and plots of traditional stories are explored in more depth, or told from an unexpected point-of-view, are a dime a dozen these days. But one stands out from the rest, and that is Gail Carson Levine’s Ella Enchanted, which takes the story of Cinderella and not only provides impetus for many of the nonsensical elements of the original tale, but builds a rich imaginary world around it and makes the titular character one of the best heroines to ever appear in YA novel.
If you secretly always thought Cinderella was a bit of a pushover, sitting and crying by the fireplace when she could have been raiding her stepsisters’ wardrobes and hitchhiking to the ball, then you’ll be pleased to find that Levine gives us a perfect acceptable reason as to why her Ella is so slavishly obedient to her step-family: she’s under... Read More
Gail Carson Levine(1947- )
All of Gail Carson Levine‘s fantasy novels are for children ages 9 and up. Most are available for download at Audible.com. Read excerpts at her Harper Collins website.
Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine
Fairest by Gail Carson Levine
Just as Gail Carson Levine's award-winning Ella Enchanted tackled the story of Cinderella, giving the story depth and meaning whilst simultaneously treating the reader to one of the best heroines and most realistic romances in all of Young Adult literature, Fairest purports to retell the fairytale of Snow White with a few twists.
Aza was abandoned as an infant at the Featherbed Inn and adopted by the innkeeper and his wife. Though loved by her family, Aza is ashamed of her weight and perceived ugliness, particularly since the kingdom of Ayortha is one that prizes beauty and song above all other virtues. Shunned by many of the guests, Aza enjoys solitude and occasionally the company of the gnomes that sometimes stay at the inn, including one that prophesies that in the future they'll meet again underground at a time when Aza will be i... Read More
Ever by Gail Carson Levine
Gail Carson Levine is best known for her retellings of traditional fairytales, (most famously Ella Enchanted) but here she draws on a mythological setting for her inspiration. Despite the fairytale-ish title, Ever takes place in an imaginary world that bears a resemblance to Greek or Middle-Eastern culture, particularly in regard to its climate, customs, clothing and food.
Kezi is a girl nearing her sixteenth birthday, living the simple life with her beloved mother and father, and who likes nothing more than weaving and dancing. Unbeknownst to her, she's being watched by the wind god Olus, a young god who is fascinated by humanity but unsure how to be a part of it. Even more confusing for the him is the fact that Kezi's family is monotheistic and worships a singular God that he has never heard of before. When Kezi's father bargains with... Read More
The Princess Tales — (1999- ) Ages 9-12. An omnibus edition is available. Publisher: Ever since Newbery Honor author Gail Carson Levine introduced the magical village of Snettering-on-Snoakes in the faraway Kingdom of Biddle, young readers have been laughing their way through her hilarious retellings of famous and not-so-famous fairy tales. The high jinks begin in The Fairy’s Mistake, which pokes fun at a meddlesome fairy whose plans for good go terribly awry. In The Princess Test, the author spoofs the notion that a pea can prove a person’s pedigree. Princess Sonora and the Long Sleep features a genius of a princess, a hundred years of snooze, two princes, and a flock of balding sheep! Cinderella is a boy in Cinderellis and the Glass Hill, and the glass slipper is a glass hill. In For Biddle’s Sake, Parsley tries to forget her beloved prince and get used to life as a Biddlebum Toad. The road to happily-ever-after isn’t easy when a baker’s son and a princess fall in love in The Fairy’s Return. Elements of the classics are woven into these not-so-typical retellings of “Toads and Diamonds,” “The Princess and the Pea,” “Sleeping Beauty,” “The Princess on the Glass Hill,” “Puddocky,” and “The Golden Goose.” The fresh and funny twists on favorite fairy tales will win the hearts and capture the imaginations of young readers everywhere.
The Fairy Books — (2005) Ages 9-12. Publisher: Seasoned fractured fairy tale teller Gail Carson Levine provides the captivating back story of Tinker Bell and Co. in this lavishly illustrated addition to the Neverland canon. Freckled and eager to please, Prilla is a brand new fairy, born of a baby’s laugh. Upon her arrival to Neverland, she is dismayed to discover she has no talent for any of the fairy avocations. Tinker Bell (a pots-and-pans-talent fairy) takes Prilla to see Mother Dove, whose single blue egg holds the secret of the island’s eternal youth. But before the wise bird can advise Prilla, Neverland is shaken by a terrible hurricane. Mother Dove is thrown off her nest, and the precious egg is shattered. Immediately, Neverland folk begin to age.
The Wish — (1999) Ages 9-12. Publisher: Presto! — she’s popular! In this original modern-day fairy tale, Gail Carson Levine, the Newbery Honor-winning author of Ella Enchanted, introduces a friendless eighth-grader whose wish to become the most popular kid at school comes true. Now, Wilma’s life is everything she ever dreamed of — she has dozens of friends, guys vying for her attention, and she can do whatever she pleases and people still love her. But what will she do in a few weeks when her wish ends with graduation? Funny, painful, and delightfully real, this engaging novel explores the question of whether we really want to be liked for who we are.
The Two Princesses of Bamarre — (2001) Ages 9-12. Publisher: When a plague strikes Bamarre, Princess Addie must save her sister. Brave and adventureous, Princess Meryl dreams of fighting dragons and protecting the kingdom of Bamarre. Shy and fearful, Princess Addie is content to stay within the safety of the castle walls. The one thing that the sisters share is their unwavering love for each other. The tables are turned, however, when the Gray Death leaves Meryl fatally ill. To save her sister, meek Princess Addie must find the courage to set out on a dangerous quest filled with dragons, unknown magic, and death itself. Time is running out, and the sisters’ lives — and the future of the kingdom of Bamarre — hang in the balance.
A Tale of Two Castles — (2011) Ages 9-12. Publisher: Mysteries abound, especially in two castles…. Elodie journeys to the town of Two Castles to become a mansioner—an actress—but the master of the troupe turns her away. The only one who will take Elodie in is Meenore, a dragon who happens to be a brilliant detective. To crack Meenore’s newest case, Elodie goes undercover on a dangerous mission within an ogre’s castle. There, disguised as a kitchen maid, Elodie plays the role of a lifetime, pitted against a foe intent on murder.