Monday, April 28, 2014

Snack Size Reviews for Fairy Tale Fortnight

Last week I decided to read a couple of the fairy-tale retellings I had on my Kindle in honor of Fairy Tale Fortnight, hosted by A Backwards Story and The Book Rat. :) But before I share my snack size reviews, I just wanted to let you know that my own fairy-tale retellings (Bellflower and Fairy Slippers) were featured on "A Backwards Story" HERE, via a guest post I wrote titled "Fairy Tales in the Wild West." I'm also giving away three e-copies of the book, so do stop by and enter! Here's a little more info about the short-story combo ebook...

Bellflower ~ #0.5 in "The Heart's Spring" series

Short Story Prequel to Forget Me Not 

Spring 1880

Annabelle knows only one way of life. Jacob knows only one way to feel secure. When their paths cross in a Western mining town, can they find a way for love to bloom? Discover the story behind two hurting hearts in this short but sweet retelling of Beauty and the Beast.

Fairy Slippers ~ #2.5 in "The Heart's Spring" series

Short Story Companion to Bleeding Heart

Spring 1888

Margaret is fragile. Zachary is tough. Both are lonely. Will a dance in a redwood lumber town bring them together - or drive them apart forever? Discover the continuing story of the cook from Bleeding Heart in this short but sweet retelling of Cinderella.

 Get both of these short stories in one $.99 ebook!
Amazon (Kindle) | Barnes & Noble (Nook) | Smashwords

And now for those reviews! The first is for a lighter Peter-Pan story, the second is for a darker Cinderella novella.

Love, Tink (The Complete Series) by Elle Strauss

Rating: Spring

Currently $3.99 for Kindle

This story is for all those fans of YA romance who ever had a crush on Peter Pan (especially the Disney version!). While Peter is portrayed as a lot more mature than one would expect of such a boy, his adorable gentlemanliness won me over, overall. Originally published in six episodes, this full story flows well, with lots of fun twists, dimension/world-hopping, and fairies! Perhaps a little young for some readers (especially initially), Love, Tink grew on me with its imaginative plot. With a little suspension of disbelief and some pixie dust, you too can enjoy this sweet take on Tinkerbell, Peter Pan, and Neverland.

Gilded Ashes (Novella) by Rosamund Hodge

Rating: Spring

Gilded Ashes is a fascinating and creepy retelling of Cinderella. With a unique twist, this version of the story focuses on mother-daughter relationships - showing how selfish "love" and shadowy compromises can lead to some very scary outcomes. Featuring a ghost, demons, and some gruesome/frightening scenes, this dark fairy tale might not be for everyone. But for those who love retellings with depth, I was impressed by how this story was crafted, the way it warns while also giving the faintest hint of warmth in its surprisingly sweet romance and its emphasis on the freedom of truthfulness.

Note: "Seasoned" or "unseasoned" is in reference to my book rating system. Thanks to Juju of Tales of Whimsy for the inspiration regarding mini reviews!


Grace said...

"Love, Tink" looks cute. I love cute stories (they're one of my favorite things to write!), so I'm putting this one on my "to-read list."

I've read "Bellflower." It had some dark tones, what with it's setting and the characters livelihoods, but I think you handled it very well. Still need to read "Fairy Slippers." I just love the title of it!

Amber Holcomb said...


It's super cute! There's some typical YA school & dating drama, but the hero is adorable and the premise is quite clever. As someone who used to LOVE all things fairy (and princess), I found this to be sort of a treat for the younger me that's still inside. ;)

I'm glad to know you felt the darker tones were handled well with Bellflower - thank you for the encouragement! Fairy Slippers is a lot lighter, overall, and more overtly inspirational. :) And I was super happy to have come across that flower name, as I think it's a perfect fit for the title of a Cinderella retelling! Isn't it so sweet? :) (I've got a pic and video clip of the flower pinned to my Pinterest board, if you're curious to see what it looks like!) Hope you enjoy the story when you read it!


Rissi said...

What a lovely post, Amber. Love your snack size reviews and all you said about these two books. Both sound charming in their own unique way and I like the idea of a more mature Peter. :)

Amber Holcomb said...


Aww, thank you, my friend! :) I agree - even though the second one is darker, they are both charming in their own ways (plot, writing style, etc.). And yes, I'm all for a boy who can grow up a little! ;)


Unknown said...

Look like some good ones!! Thanks for the great reviews :)

Amber Holcomb said...


There are a lot of great new fairy-tale retellings, aren't there? So glad you liked the reviews! :)