Both sisters read and review the same book, a fairy tale retelling.
Our Fairy-Tale Book Club Pick for December 2022 is:
Join us in reading this adaptation of the "Sleeping Beauty" fairy tale. In December, Mary and Elizabeth will each share a review of this novel. Then, they will discuss the book and share their discussion here. You can join the discussion as you read along by joining our Discord community or our Facebook group!
Keep reading for more information about this book and the fairy-tale inspiration behind it.
The Bone Spindle is Leslie Vedder's debut novel and the first in a planned trilogy; it was first published this past January, and the second novel in the trilogy is expected to be published early next year. The Bone Spindle is a genderbent adaptation of "Sleeping Beauty," with Briar Rose as an ensorcelled prince rather than the traditional princess. While sleeping or otherwise enchanted princes are not unheard of in fairy tales, this gender swap is uncommon for the "Sleeping Beauty" tale.
"Sleeping Beauty" is a tale type (ATU 410) defined by the inclusion of a princess who is forced into an enchanted sleep, and who is later awakened. The earliest known written version of this tale is from the medieval romance Perceforest. Perceforest is a French work which depicts a romanticized version of Arthurian Great Britain. The Sleeping Beauty tale within Perceforest is the tale of Troylus and Zellandine. You can find the full text of an English translation of that tale as a downloadable PDF here.
The tale of "Sleeping Beauty" was next collected by Giambattista Basile as "Sun, Moon, and Talia." A version entitled "The Sleeping Beauty in the Wood" was collected by Chales Perrault. The Grimm brothers wrote down a tamer version of the tale in their collection of fairy stories; they called it "Little Brier-Rose." You can find the full text of English translations of these tales here (all edited and/or translated by D. L. Ashliman). You can also find a full illustrated facsimile of the Perrault tale here. You can also read more about the publication history and the above variants of this tale over at Sur La Lune here.
Sisters and writers both. Love fairy tales.
Last quarter book club pick:
Six Crimson Cranes by Elizabeth Lim
The Bone Spindle by Leslie Vedder