Thursday, April 16, 2015

Rump: The True Story of Rumpelstiltskin and Jack: The True Story of Jack and the Beanstalk by Liesl Shurtliff



Knopf Books for Young Readers (April 9, 2013) 272 pages

About the Book:

In a magic kingdom where your name is your destiny, 12-year-old Rump is the butt of everyone's joke. But when he finds an old spinning wheel, his luck seems to change. Rump discovers he has a gift for spinning straw into gold. His best friend, Red Riding Hood, warns him that magic is dangerous, and she’s right. With each thread he spins, he weaves himself deeper into a curse.

To break the spell, Rump must go on a perilous quest, fighting off pixies, trolls, poison apples, and a wickedly foolish queen. The odds are against him, but with courage and friendship—and a cheeky sense of humor—he just might triumph in the end.

((There are no spoilers within either review for either book.))

My Quick Thoughts:

Once Upon a Time is one of the few TV shows I make sure I watch (through DVR), even if I'm behind a few weeks right now. Probably due to that, but Rumpelstiltskin has earned a place in my heart. I can't help but cheer and hope for the guy. I couldn't wait to see Shurtliff's take on the young Rump, though. (By the way, this book was written before OUAT, from what I've read.)

Although Rump sticks to the main plot of the original fairy tale, I greatly enjoyed the creative twists added to the "true" story. Rump won me over completely! He's really small for his age, and has a hard life, but he keeps going. With my little Grasshopper being so incredibly small for his age, my heart goes out to fictional characters with the same trait.

I definitely recommend giving this one a try if you like fairy tale retellings at all!

*Thanks to my local library for lending me an e-copy!

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Purchase Link:

Rump: The True Story of Rumpelstiltskin

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Knopf Books for Young Readers (April 14, 2015) 304 pages

About the Book:

All work and no play makes Jack extremely bored. And when Jack gets bored, he makes mischief. It’s not that he’s bad; he just longs for adventure—and there’s nothing adventurous about toiling day and night to grow yucky green stuff.

Adventure finally arrives one day in the form of giants, and soon Jack is chasing them to a land beyond the clouds, with his little sister, Annabella, in tow. The kingdom of giants is full of slugs the size of sheep, venomous pixies as tall as grown men, and a chatty cook with the biggest mouth Jack has ever seen. There’s giant fun to be had, too: puddings to swim in, spoons to use as catapults, monster toads to carry off pesky little sisters. . . .

But Jack and Annabella are on a mission. The king of the giants has taken something that belongs to them, and they’ll do anything—even dive into a smelly tureen of green bean soup—to get it back.

My Thoughts:

As much as I loved Rump, it's with this book that I decided I'll read anything Shurtliff writes!

I highly recommend reading Rump before reading Jack. I read Rump just before going into the pages of Jack. At first, it seemed that they were completely standalone from each other, but about a third of the way through Jack, the two books are connected in a really fun way. I'd hate for you to miss the moment your brain clicks with the connection!

Just like Rump, Jack is really a mix of fairy tales. I love fairy tale retellings, and I love it even more when several are mixed into one. Jack is mostly a retelling of Jack and the Beanstalk, though. Jack is a mischievous little boy, and always getting into trouble. When the giants invade his home, taking his papa into the sky, he decides it's time to make things right.

I've loved both Rump and Jack, and highly recommend them for fans of fairy tale retellings! I can't wait to read more about Red in the next book!

*Thanks to Amazon Vine for providing me with a review copy, in exchange for my honest opinion.

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Purchase Link:

Jack: The True Story of Jack and the Beanstalk

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