Hans Christian Andersen said, “Life itself is the most wonderful fairy tale.” These four books take contemporary, relatable themes (technology, tough heroines, intriguing villains and yes, Tumblr) and incorporate them into fantastic tall tales. Your child will be as entranced by these as they are by your iPad.
by Marissa Meyer
The protagonist of this story, Cinder, is a young female cyborg and talented mechanic living in post–World War IV Beijing. The story takes place in a world of technology and wonder, and it doesn’t include a quest to win over a prince but sends the protagonist off on an intergalactic struggle to save the world. There’s an evil stepmother, stepsisters and a ball, but you won’t find any ball gowns or scrubbing of floors. This first novel in the Lunar Chronicles will have you and your child riveted.
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Clockwork Fairy Tales: A Collection of Steampunk Fables
by Stephen L. Antczak and James C. Bassett
This collection of original fables derives inspiration from the classic fairy tales Sleeping Beauty, The Pied Piper and The Emperor’s New Clothes, but it adds the distinct steampunk themes of wizardry, technology, gears, gizmos and genius professors. This book doesn’t shy away from sinister imagery; if your child is a fan of Neil Gaiman and Roald Dahl, get your hands on Clockwork Fairy Tales.
Alice in Tumblr-land: And Other Fairy Tales for a New Generation
by Tim Manley
Tech-savvy kids will adore this collection of over 100 fairy tales reworked for a digital age. Read about Snow White coming face to face with seven Facebook stalkers, Jack and Jill running up their iPhone bill and the ugly duckling getting a Photoshop makeover. This book may well signify the end of demure princesses and fairy godmothers. Keep your eyes peeled for its release in October 2013!
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Snow White and the Black Lagoon
by Camille Rose Garcia
Artist Camille Rose Garcia turns the Brothers Grimm classic into a lowbrow-style treat for the eyes, complete with Gothic-y fonts and graphic design backgrounds. She creates a dynamic new context for a classic story that highly visual kids and budding artists will want to eat up. You’ll be torn as to where to keep this book: in your child’s bookshelf or on your coffee table.