Well, thanks for stopping by! So, for those who don’t follow this blog, I post a book review every Friday and today, I decided to do something a bit different. I am posting a review about a book that I disliked with the intensity of a thousand burning suns! I rarely do this but here we go!
Once Upon A Curse: 17 Dark Faerie Tales is an anthology composed of short stories by various authors. Some of these authors have won grand awards for their writing and so I cannot lie when I say that I believed I sat my bar quite high. And that must have been my downfall. You know how some people say that having low expectations means they’re always met? Maybe I wouldn’t be as appalled as I am if my expectations had been lower. Now, the stories within this book are meant to be re-tellings of famous stories, most of them inspired by the Grimm fairy tales. I have the complete collection of Grimm stories and love it unconditionally. Furthermore, anyone who has been a faithful follower understands my deep connection with fairy tales, folklore and the Gothic so when a book promises that, I get quite excited.
There were a couple of stories in here that were quite good. And whoever was in charge of formatting this book knew exactly what to do with them, include one in the beginning and a couple in the middle to make the readers hopeful that not all the stories could be that horrendous. And honestly, the stories that were good were really good. The characters were dynamic, the short plot intriguing and familiar albeit different from our expectations based on the versions of the stories I know, the ones many are familiar with.
One of my biggest dislikes about this anthology is that not all of the stories are complete. Quite a few of them said, “Find the full story here” or “This story line is continued in…” When I go to read a story in an anthology, I expect it to be complete. If it was a weekly thing in a magazine, that would be different. But in a definitive print version? Why weren’t they finished? And you could definitely tell which stories had been cut to their bare bones to fit within the pages of the book. Another aspect of this book that didn’t cut it for me is that some of the stories seemed as though they hadn’t seen an editor’s desk. Misspellings, grammar errors and such.
Overall Score: 2/5 Stars. And that is just because some of the stories were actually quite good. Sadly, they were in the minority. They did not make up for the stories that were subpar.
Perhaps my righteous indignation is, in fact, misplaced, but I was truly expecting a wonderful anthology of beautifully crafted fairy tales and folklore which is not what I got. Anyway, have you ever read a book (whether you finished it or not) that you just could not stand? Let me know down below in the comments!