Black Swan, White Raven

Black Swan, White Raven

Book - 1998
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A stellar assymbly of many of today's most creative and accomplishedstorytellers has gathered around the tribal fire to embroider well-worn yarnswith new golden thread. Black Swan, White Raven revisits the tales thatcharmed, enthralled, and terrified us in our early youth -- carrying usaloft into the healthy, beating heart of cherished myth to tell once again thestories of Rumpelstiltskins and sleeping beauties, only this time from an edgy,provocative and distinctly adult perspective. The themes and archetypes of ourbeloved childhood fiction are reexamined in a darker light by 21 superb tellerof tales who deftly uncover the ironic, the outrageous, the enigmatic and theerotic at the core of the world's best-known fables, while revealing thesobering truths and lies behind "happily ever after."
Publisher: Rockville, Md. : Prime Books,a c1998
ISBN: 9780809572540
Characteristics: xi, 366 p. ; 22 cm
Additional Contributors: Windling, Terri
Datlow, Ellen


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FindingJane Jun 30, 2014

This anthology is definitely a mixed bag of nuts. There is sometimes a fairy tale element, sometimes not. What most of the stories have in common is that women are given short shrift. Too many feature females as evil, victimized or peripheral. One story nearly omits the woman’s voice altogether, reciting a droning theme of abandonment as dry and dusty as an academician’s thesis. There is a list of recommendations in the back that may lead the more discerning reader to more gender-balanced choices. This book could have used a few more of those.

A couple of notable exceptions are “The Reverend’s Wife” which has more of a bawdy Chaucerian feel than a fantastical one and “The True Story”, a Snow White variation with a happier ending and a refuting of all the ridiculous elements of the original. But there are too few of such stories to win full enthusiasm. The tales for the most part are well written but there is a notable lack of humor, giving a decidedly dour overtone to the anthology.


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