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KISSING THE WITCH by Emma Donoghue


Old Tales in New Skins

by Emma Donoghue

Age Range: 12 & up

Pub Date: May 11th, 1997
ISBN: 0-06-027575-8
Publisher: HarperCollins

 Under a surface as seamless as stone worn smooth by the sea are tales readers may know, but with images and perspectives quite different from the canonical tradition. What if the beast in Beauty and the Beast were a woman? What if the shrill voices ordering Cinderella to work were inside her head? Rapunzel, Donkeyskin, Snow White, and other familiar heroines take unconventional shapes within Donoghue's beautifully hewn prose, in deeply female stories, scented with blood and flowers. Each story is linked to the next by the frame of a question that a character in the previous story asks; Donoghue thus nests the stories in a way that each follows the other to become one long tale. The murkiness of desire and the necessity of finding one's way will resonate for adolescents struggling with issues of identity, sexuality, stepparents, and societal strictures. A dark jewel. (Short stories/folklore. 12+)