Wednesday, September 30, 2009

In Sleeping Beauty's Bed: Bawdy Fairy Tales by Mitzi Szereto

Pure, naughty fun: Mitzi Szereto's multicultural fractured fairy tales (Cleis Press, 2009) aren't for kids, but they are the kind you could read out loud in a pub to amuse your friends. In that, they resemble the oral versions of classic tales told around campfires in ages past. (Along with the tales, the author also includes a brief introduction giving some information about the story's origin.) Like the ale-soaked storytellers of old, Srezeto injects a good dose of humor into each bawdy yarn. She retells European fairy tales, including "Little Red Riding Hood" and "Rapunzel," but also ventures into Middle Eastern and Asian fairy tales, giving each a unique, humorous twist undreamt-of by the original tellers. This book will sit comfortably on my personal bookshelf in between Feminist Fairy Tales and The Virago Book of Erotic Myths and Legends.

One note: very sensitive readers may wish to bypass "Michel Michelkleiner's Good Luck," as it contains scenes of violence some may find offensive.