This sixth anthology in the adult fairy-tale series by acclaimed editors Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling presents another diverse collection of stories and poems loosely based on folklore traditions around the world. Readers familiar with previous books in the series will recognize the names of many regular contributors, including Tanith Lee, Jane Yolen, Esther Friesner, and Joyce Carol Oates, as well as works from Neil Gaiman, Charles de Lint, and others. Tanith Lee's "Rapunzel" opens the collection with a charmingly simple reconstruction of that classic fairy tale. Esther Friesner's "Big Hair" takes the same theme into the present with less cheerful results. Greg Costikyan considers the fate of an ensorcelled sleeping beauty dug up by archaeologists centuries later in "And Still She Sleeps," while Jane Yolen's "Snow in Summer" turns the tables on Snow White's evil stepmother with a deep-dish apple pie and a fry pan. Scott Bradfield's "Goldilocks Tells All" is especially memorable for its Jerry Springer-like portrayal of the ultimate dysfunctional family. Leah Cutter considers the loneliness of living under a curse in her Texas two-step story "The Red Boots." Severna Park's feminist "The Golem" revives a Jewish folktale, while Bryn Kanar's haunting "Dreaming Among Men" draws on Native American legend. Howard Waldrop's "Our Mortal Span" is perhaps the most unique story here, a surprising blend of black comedy, killer-robot story, and fairy tale. While on the whole this collection isn't as strong as previous volumes, it still delivers a fine array of thoughtful writing on some of the best-known--and yet unknown--stories we love.|
Source:Charlene Brusso, Amazon.com.