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Tales from the Brothers Grimm and the Sisters Weird

Tales from the Brothers Grimm and the Sisters Weird

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Tales from the Brothers Grimm and the Sisters Weird

4/5 (8 peringkat)
104 pages
1 hour
Aug 1, 2005


Welcome to the fairy-tale world where Hansel and Gretel are horrible children who deserve to be baked and where Beauty is dismayed when her beloved Beast turns human. In the realm of the Brothers Grimm and the Sisters Weird, when the sky really does fall, Chicken Little becomes the leader of a religious movement, gets her own TV show, collects millions of dollars to build a theme park, and then makes off with the money.These tongue-in-cheek interpretations of more than a dozen favorite fairy tales will have readers in stitches.
Aug 1, 2005

Tentang penulis

Vivian Vande Velde has written many books for teen and middle grade readers, including Heir Apparent, User Unfriendly, All Hallow's Eve: 13 Stories, Three Good Deeds, Now You See It ..., and the Edgar Award–winning Never Trust a Dead Man. She lives in Rochester, New York. Visit her website at www.vivianvandevelde.com.

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Tales from the Brothers Grimm and the Sisters Weird - Vivian Vande Velde


A Golden Opportunity

Sidney kicked on the dining-room door. Hey, he yelled. Hey, princess!

He heard the king ask, What's that noise?

Nothing, the princess answered.

Princess! Sidney yelled. Its me, the frog prince. You accidentally left me behind.

The king's voice said, He says he's a frog prince. What does he mean, you left him behind?

I don't know, the princess said.

You promised you'd help me. Sidney wasn't used to yelling, and his throat was getting sore. In return for getting back your father's golden ball paperweight that you were playing with and dropped into the pool in the garden.

The golden paperweight that left a wet spot on my papers this afternoon? the king asked.

I don't know anything about it, the princess aid.

The king must have brought his fist down on the table. Sidney could hear the dishes rattle. A promise, the king said, is a promise. Let the frog in!

Copyright © 1995 by Vivian Vande Velde

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced

or transmitted in any form or by any means,

electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recording,

or any information storage and retrieval system,

without permission in writing from the publisher.

Requests for permission to make copies of any part of the work

should be submitted online at www.harcourt.com/contact

or mailed to the following address: Permissions Department,

Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company,

6277 Sea Harbor Drive, Orlando, Florida 32887-6777.


Illustrations copyright © 1995 by Brad Weinman

First Magic Carpet Books edition 2005

Magic Carpet Books is a trademark of Harcourt, Inc.,

registered in the United States of America and/or other jurisdictions.

The Library of Congress has cataloged the hardcover edition as follows.

Vande Velde, Vivian.

Tales from the Brothers Grimm and the Sisters Weird/Vivian Vande Velde.

p. cm.

Summary: Presents thirteen twisted versions of such familiar fairy tales as

Red Riding Hood, Jack and the Beanstalk, Hansel and Crete!,

and the Three Billy Goats Gruff.

I. Fairy tales. 2. Parodies. [L Fairy tales. 2. Folklore.

3. Humorous stories.] 1 Title.

PZ8.V2374Tal 1995

[398.2] —dc20 94-26341

ISBN 978-0-15-200220-6

ISBN 978-0-15-205572-1 pb

Text set in Cochin

Designed by Camilla Filancia


Printed in the United States of America

To the children of the Rochester area schools,

who have provided me with lots

of ideas for stories,

and especially to the children of

Twelve Corners School,

who provided me with this one.

And to Cynthia Wild Washerwoman DeFelice,

who came up with the right answer before

I even knew there was a question.


Straw into Gold

Once upon a time, in the days before Social Security or insurance companies, there lived a miller and his daughter, Della, who were fairly well-off and reasonably happy until the day their mill burned down.

Suddenly they had nothing except the clothes they were wearing: no money, nor any way to make money, nor any possibility of ever getting money again unless they came up with a plan.

Now the miller was very good at milling, and he was fairly good at being a father, but at planning he was no good at all.

His plan was this: They would sit by the side of the road and wait for someone who looked rich to pass by. Then the miller would announce: My daughter can spin straw into gold. If you give us three gold pieces, she will spin a whole barnful of straw into gold for you. If the rich people were interestedand the miller pointed out that they couldn't help but be interested—he would then say that his daughter's magic only worked by moonlight. You must leave her alone—completely undisturbed—all night long. And by dawn all of the straw will be spun into gold.

I don't understand this plan, Della said. I'm not very good at spinning, even wool, and I have no idea how—

No, no, the miller interrupted, you don't understand.

That's what I just said. Della sighed.

Listen, the miller explained, the plan, of course, is for the two of us to take our fee of three gold pieces and run away during the night.

That's dishonest, Della pointed out.

So it is, her father admitted. But we will take those three gold pieces and rebuild our mill. Once the mill is working again, we will save all our money until we can repay the people we've tricked.

Della still didn't like this plan, but since she herself had no experience beyond milling and being a daughter, she agreed.

So Della and her father sat by the side of the road, and the first rich person to pass by was the richest person in the land: he was the king.

Oh, dear, Della said, recognizing the royal crest on the door of the carriage, maybe we should wait—

But if the miller was not good at making plans, he was even worse at changing plans once they were made. Standing in the middle of the road, he called out, My daughter can spin straw into gold. If you give us three gold pieces, she will spin a whole barnful of straw into gold for you.

The king motioned for the driver to stop the horses. You, he said, leaning out of the window. Both of you, come closer. The king had clothes of red satin and brocade, sewn with gold thread. He wore more rings than he had fingers, and he had a dark wig, which was all thick ringlets around his pale face. He put a silk handkerchief to his nose, for Della and her father still smelled of smoke from their burned-down mill. What did you say? he demanded.

The miller wasn't sure if this question meant the king was interested and he should now explain about the moonlight and the being left alone, or if it meant the king was slightly deaf and hadn't heard the first part. The miller decided he'd better repeat himself. He raised his voice and enunciated clearly. My daughter can spin straw into gold. If you give us three gold pieces, she will spin a whole barnful of straw into gold for you.

If she can spin straw into gold, the king asked, then why are the two of you dressed in filthy rags?

Ah, the miller said. Well... Once again he had been all prepared to explain about the moonlight and the being left alone, and now that he couldn't say that, he had no idea what to say. Why are we dressed in rags? he repeated. That's a very good question. That's an excellent question.

The king dabbed at

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  • (2/5)
    A bunch of twisted fairy tales,(The granddaughter, which is the twisted tale of Little Red Riding Hood) very easy to read, but then it's a children's book. It would be very enjoyable for a 8-12 year old.It has it's cute points, example of this is a little poem about Rapunzel and an All Point's Bulletin for Goldilocks.Some of images in the book creep me out.
  • (3/5)
    Its Cute. I suspect kids of the 9-11 year old range would love this book. But, for an adult, the twists weren't all that twisty, and some are a bit predictable - the Hansel and Gretel tale was actually quite scary.
  • (5/5)
    An excellent book which is extremely humourous. Ignore the fact that this is a children's book and enjoy it as an adult! The only two stories I was not so keen on were 'Jack' as in Jack and the Beanstalk and 'Mattresses' as in The Princess and the Pea; although both of these were very well written and still funny. If you liked the idea of what Roald Dahl did to nursery rhymes in 'Revolting Rhymes' you'll enjoy what Vivian Vande Velde has done to 13 fairy stories. Everything is turned upside down, for example Hansel and Gretal are very naughty children; little Red Riding Hood is simply awful Rumplestiltskin is lovely. Great fun, a real treat.
  • (5/5)
    I do believe that I may wind up with a shelf full of Vivian Vande Velde books! This is our second from this author and we are positively smitten! I love this just as much as the Girl does! They are clever, sly, and just the right amount of twisted to honor the originals but provide the reader with something entirely different in the end (and just as satisfying)! As one reviewer noted, Vande Velde really does challenge our notion of how the character's are, turning good into bad and ugly into beautiful and more, you get little snippets (like ads and commercials built in, so that nearly every classic children's tale is addressed here in come fashion...and each with the Vande Velde twist). The best stories in the bunch are the Rumplestiltskin retelling (the best in the book) and the Jack and the Bean Stalk one! I enjoyed the truly hideous (and clearly sociopath) Hansel and Gretel retelling...nicely done!! I'll be adding this to my growing collection! I give it a B+, it's good, twisted reading...but some of the stories felt more like first drafts than full fledged retellings, but still well worth the read despite this! Kids 8-12 will LOVE this book!
  • (5/5)
    I absolutely loved this book!
  • (3/5)
    Sorry to say, these altered fairy tales weren't up to Vande Velde's usual standards. They were a little hostile, a little bleak. The first one is the best, but it's lifted straight from The Rumpelstiltskin Problem" which is kinda ok because it's also hers, but I am glad I got this from the library instead of from a store!

    Accidentally reread 4 years later. Bumping it up one star, to three. Still not satisfied, but my main complaint this time is that they're too superficial & short. And some are actually funny. The one based on Hansel and Gretel is not just bleak, but is quite creepy - good choice if you're looking for a little Halloween read with your kids.

    I do still get excited every time I have a chance to read something new by the author, and I do especially recommend this book for the underserved girl reluctant-readers. (But of course also for boys, fans of fractured fairy tales of all ages, etc. :)"