Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Teen Tuesday - The First Edition [Megan]

It has been a very fruitful young adult week for me. Since last Tuesday I have finished 6 books. All of them young adult!

One in particular caught my interest the most. It wasn't the best or the
Photobucketmost entertaining (in all reality it kept putting me to sleep), but I was so curious to learn how it came about. The Goose Girl was Shannon Hale's first published book and also the first one I have ever read.

Did you know that "The Goose Girl" was a fairy tale written by the Grimm brothers?
Photobucket You can click here to read it, but I wouldn't recommend doing so unless you have already read the book. Growing up, "The Goose Girl" was one of Hale's favorite fairy tales. Her mother used to read to out her out of a large book of fairy tales. I find the image that makes in my mind completely enchanting.

Where did Shannon Hale's concept for doing adapted fairy tale come from? I have always been interested in adapted and altered fairy tales. The first one I read was Ella Enchanted and I was curious to know if it has been in some way an inspiration to Hale in her writing. For me it seemed so obvious to me that there could be not other book that would serve as inspiration. But of course there was; Beauty: A Retelling of the Story of Beauty and the Beast by Robin Mckinley was the true inspiration for The Goose Girl, and has now made it to the top of my books I want to search out and read pile. Which is interesting because it is an imaginary pile.

The Goose Girl was an interesting read for me. I expected to love it and I just didn't... One of the reasons Hale picked this fairy tale was that she felt the story left
Photobuckettoo many questions unanswered. But in her quest to answer these questions I often felt that she put too many words on the page. The character of the goose girl well was crafted. She was both likable and believable. But the story did drag at moments, especially at the end. The characters were traveling but the prose was not. It was just as long as the previous, more static parts of the book and dampened the action and movement toward the end of the book.

Even though I was not overly impressed with the book, in the end I did like it. And I am interested in reading the other two books in the series. I know there are a lot of Shannon Hale fans out there. I am curious to know why they like her so much? It isn't that I dislike her, but I didn't feel like there as anything spectacular here. There were parts of the book where the words were lovely, where the writing was powerful with emotion. But I simply wasn't overwhelmed but the power of her writing nor her ability to tell a story.

Before I move on I would like to take a moment to share with you all a picture of Shannon with her two children. They are sharing a book in much the same way as I imagine Shannon's mother doing with her and her siblings.

And, in conclusion, I am just going to list the rest of the books I have finished in the past week since brevity is not my strong suit (see above!)

Have you read any or all of these? I would love to know what you think! Leave me a comment or if you feel like it write a Teen Tuesday post of your own!


Melissa Walker said...

Teen Tuesday is a great idea! If I ever figure out my blogroll, I will totally link you guys. I've read BOOK OF A THOUSAND DAYS and adored it... Maureen J. is still on my to-read shelf...

Anilee said...

So maybe this is sort of late...

I'm a major Shannon Hale fan. I recently reread The Goose Girl and...I just can't help but fall in love with it. It's long and imperfect, but it's still my favorite book of all time. I can't really say why exactly because I do understand why you say what you do. I mean, I can think of better written books, but I just don't love them the way I love GG. And it doesn't drag to me. I mean, I know that it could have been shorter, but I just can't stop reading. I get wrapped up in the story.

And I also reread Enna Burning which I love almost as much. It's darker and it's like seventy pages shorter and I think it may move a more quickly.

I'm rereading River Secrets. It's the funniest, writing-wise, of the three, but I just can't get into it this time around.

And I have read Beauty. Personally, I'd have to say that GG is much better. Beauty was truly one of the most boring books I'd ever read. The plot, the characters, the writing...everything. I was expecting to love it because I love retold fairy tales and almost all my friends listed it as one of their favorites, but I did not like it at all.