Why Retellings?

Discussion Question 4

What do you like most about retellings?

I think my favorite thing about retellings is seeing the stories that I know and love reimagined in different ways. It is so interesting to read another author’s take on the classics and see what new ideas and twists can be added but see the story retain its integrity.

One of the coolest things about retellings is finding pieces of the original story and watching how the author uses them to weave in the old and the new. It seems like no matter what the retelling is, whether it is more traditional or creative, there are always certain elements to each tale that remains in every version.

For example, Cinderella has been retold dozens of times, but in every version I’ve read, there is always some way that her ‘glass slipper’ shows up. In Gail Carson Levine’s, Ella Enchanted, they show up in a more familiar way as special slippers that her fair mother bestows on her for the ball, while in Marissa Meyer’s Cinder, it is actually part of Cinder’s cyborg foot that is left on the steps of the palace. Even though both of these stories are completely different from the original and each other, those iconic elements tie them together.

And I guess that’s what the appeal is to me. That even though I can be creating something that is completely my own, it still has ties to other works have been loved for years. And that in some small way, I’m part of a group of readers and authors who share the same passion for them as I do.

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What is your favorite retelling? What makes it so special?

I’d love to hear your thoughts!

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2 thoughts on “Why Retellings?

  1. Besides, that’s the essence of fairy tales, don’t you think? They have crossed the millennia changing constantly, but always retaining their identity. That’s their power, and I find it mindblowingly fascinating that in our digital era they still work as they did millennia ago

    Liked by 1 person

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