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Cinders by Michelle Davidson Argyle and other fractured fairy tales

Good news! This summer, Michelle Davidson Argyle, a.k.a. Lady Glamis, is releasing a post-ever-after Cinderella story in the form of a novella called Cinders. Here is the trailer:

Michelle intended this piece for self-publication from the beginning, for a few good reasons. But it is clearly an exception to the assumption that traditionally published works are better. I was lucky enough to have a chance to read this book in draft, and it's an exciting, whimsical story that outshines most of the high-profile novels I pick up casually at bookstores. This is truly a professionally crafted, inspired read that I look forward to placing on my bookshelf.

Speaking of other novels, not to be a snob, but these days I feel like browsing the fiction section is like thrift store shopping. It takes time to wade through all the garbage to find something good. Frankly, I trust fellow readers with a taste for good literature more than I trust bestseller lists when it comes to quality and interest.

So, instead of doing a bunch of research or spending hours at the library or bookstore, I ask you, fellow readers: Can you recommend to me your favorite fantasy books, preferably some that have been recently released? I am especially looking for fractured fairy tales or stories inspired by folklore. Anything set in the 10th or 11th centuries (pre-Crusades) would be great, too. What should I add to my summer reading list?


  1. Thank you so much for the mention!

    I don't know of any novels right now to recommend to you, but I'll be keeping an eye here for suggestions from readers. This is the kind of fiction I'm interested in right now, too. Gee, I wonder why. :)

  2. I always recommend Diana Wynne Jones (MG/YA)and Patricia McKillip (adult)to fantasy lovers, but you may have devoured their books already.
    Have you read LIPS TOUCH by Laini Taylor. Excellent writing and eerie stories.
    Ellen Datlow edits great collections, such as Black Thorn, White Rose and The Faery Reel.
    Have a summer of fun reading!

  3. I'm a sucker for all things Cinderella...this one looks like it was made just for me! Consider it on my list!

    As for your list, I'm afraid I don't have any recommendations at the moment...I kinda fly by the seat of my pants and just read whatever is handy...but I'm sure you'll have a ton of recommendations from others.

  4. Hey, Genie! Totally off thread...I clicked over from Le R trying to find an email for you. Your comment

    It makes me feel terrified, like it's nearly impossible to write a book until you're old. But it also makes me feel good that I'm in the game 30 years ahead of the crowd.

    made me chuckle because I feel so OLD compared to the whippersnappers coming out of the gate! (For the record, I'm not. I'm somewhere in the middle from what I can guess.)

    Anyway, I blogged about same not too long ago, wondering what old soul spark some people have when they are fifteen that makes them capable of writing a real, live, good book. I didn't have it. I always had the words but lacked the seasoning until I was much older. (The seasoning for anything novel length of interest, much less actually good, that is.)

    Some of us are born spicy, others of us have to acquire it. I don't think it's just the time of life that drives these women to try writing, it's probably the collection of experience that gives them something to write.

    And then there are the annoying prodigies who channel for their generation, see outside their own lives much younger than stodgy matrons like me.

    If you stack up young against the competition, it's probably because it didn't take you half as long to be interesting.

  5. Any of the books in the "Once Upon a Time" Series are great - they're written by several authors, but the ones by Cameron Dokey are my favorites. They are in the YA section and are so much fun.

    For a little older fairy tale twisting fun try Mercedes Lackey's Tales of the 500 Kingdoms. The first is called "The Fairy Godmother". I LOVE her books SO much! She just came out with the 5th one called Sleeping Beauty and I can't wait to read it!

  6. Michelle, thanks for putting your work out there! I loved reading your story.

    Vicki: Yeah, it's good. :) And I am so pleased with others' tips...

    Tricia and Rebecca: Thank you for those recommendations! They sound promising. I will search the library for some of those titles this weekend.

    Laurel: Thanks for visiting! I definitely wasn't one of those genius kids with a great novel inside them at age 15 either... but I feel like I do have it in me now, at 27. And I get the feeling that many other people in their 20s and 30s could write a decent book, too, if they would/could put in the time and work necessary. It scares me that so many people think they have to wait until they retire to do the creative work they've always wanted to do. I hope my life doesn't come to that. BUT... only time will tell whether I really DO have the right stuff at this stage in life. I'm serious about finding out, at least.


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