marycatelli (marycatelli) wrote,


Enchanted by Alethea Kontis

Once upon a time there was a girl named Sunday Woodcutter, the seventh daughter -- and yes, the others were Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, etc.  There were three brothers, one a foundling, and the oldest one had gone to serve the king and for having killed the prince's dog -- accident or what have you, Sunday doesn't know -- was turned into a dog.  It did not create warm feelings between the Woodcutters and the royal family.

But that was back story -- like Tuesday's tragic death, in red dancing shoes, and how Monday married a prince, and they lived in a house that she had gotten them -- and the story opens with Sunday in the woods, writing about her family, when a talking frog addresses her.  He's perfectly willing to listen to her stories, which no one in her family is, and tells her that he's starting to forget being human.  She tries the kiss, it doesn't work, but he asks her to return and tell him more stories.

Her mother does not approve.  There's lots of chores to be done.  But she goes back, and on the third visit. she brings him a bucket -- and discovers her brother Trix had exchanged their cow for beans.  The frog gives her a golden bauble, and she kisses him and runs off, missing that he turned back into a man -- the prince, from the royal family.

He's not very coherent, but he remembers her brother and, when he manages to get back home, orders there to be three balls with all eligible young women of the realm.  He's haunted by voices.  And his father set out to exploit the balls for his own purposes.

The rest of the tale involves two fairy godmothers, sisters, and spinning wool into gold, Saturday's hitting herself with an axe, a riot, a maidservant who can't speak, and someone's trying to sell Sunday a comb, an apple, and a ribbon at the fair.  Not in the same order as Snow White, actually.  There are a number of fairy tale tropes like that, blink and you'll miss them especially since they are often in quite different contexts.  Also, this one uses a lot of tales.  Including some rather obscure ones.  And some Mother Goose.
Tags: fiction reviews: fairy tale based, fiction reviews: ya fantasy, ya books

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