Michael Dirda reviews five fairy-tale books

A review of new books on the fairy tale by Marina Warner and Jack Zipes (including the first translation into English of the first edition of Grimm’s Tales), but also of two books from Princeton University Press’s Oddly Modern Fairy Tales series. I wasn’t aware of this series, but it looks well worth exploring. Dirda looks at Walter de la Mare’s Told Again and at Naomi Mitchison’s The Fourth Pig. The title tale of the latter collection looks particularly interesting in the light of OGOM’s forthcoming Company of Wolves conference; Dirda calls this a ‘Kafkaesque fable’:

Sometimes the Wolf is quiet. He is not molesting us. It may be that he is away ravaging in far places which we cannot picture, and do not care about, or it may be that he lies up in his den, sated for the time, with half-slumberous, blood-weighted eyes, the torn flesh hot in his belly provoking miasmic evil which will turn, as he grows cold and hungry again, into some new cunning which may, after all, not be capable of frustration by the meek.

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