Fourth in the series of fairy tales reworked for modern audiences (Ruby Slippers, Golden Tears, 1995, etc.). As the editors point out, the stories familiar to us today are drastically edited Victorian variations intended to entertain and instruct children. The older versions, almost invariably darker and more complex, yield no single, unambiguous interpretation, but consist of timeless themes and potent archetypes that new generations of storytellers may draw upon as they will. Of the 19 tales and 2 poems here, the most popular source is Hansel and Gretel (Garry Kilworth, John Crowley, Nina Kiriki Hoffman), followed by Snow White (Don Webb, Pat Murphy) and Sleeping Beauty (Karen Joy Fowler, Michael Blumlein). Other famous contributors include Joyce Carol Oates, Nancy Kress, and Jane Yolen; numbering among the well-known characters in new guises are Thumbelina, Rumpelstiltskin, Rapunzel, the Tin Soldier, the Tinder Box, Thomas the Rhymer (he actually existed), and a certain L.R.R. Hood. Fresh, often feminist significance teased out of ancient, ageless tapestries.