The Emerald Circus
Enter the Emerald Circus and be astonished by the transformations of your favorite tales. Ringmaster and internationally bestselling author Jane Yolen (Briar Rose, Sister Emily’s Lightship) spins modern fantasy classics in tales that go well beyond Wonderland and Oz, down the rabbit hole and back again.Where is Wendy? Leading a labor strike against the Lost Boys, of course!It’s time to go back to—and beyond—the treasured tales you thought you knew: The Wizard of Oz, Alice in Wonderland, Peter Pan and many more. Ringmaster and internationally bestselling author Jane Yolen (Briar Rose, Sister Emily’s Lightship) spins modern fantasy classics for delighted readers. A girl blown away from Kansas returns as a sophisticate with unusual gymnastic abilities. A talented apprentice, forging her first sword, is suddenly left to the mercies of Merlin. Alice’s infamous nemesis has jaws and claws, but also lacks the essential: a sense of humor.Witty and bold, and unexpected, these tales go well beyond the rabbit hole and back again.Table of ContentsAndersen’s WitchLost GirlsTough AliceBlown AwayA Knot of ToadsThe Quiet MonkThe BirdBelle Bloody Merciless DameJewel in the Toad Queen’s CrownA Gift of MagiciansRabbit HoleOur Lady of the GreenwoodThe Confession of Brother BlaiseWonder LandEvian SteelSister Emily’s Lightship

The Emerald Circus Details

TitleThe Emerald Circus
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseNov 14th, 2017
PublisherTachyon
ISBN-139781616962739
Rating
GenreShort Stories, Fantasy, Retellings, Fiction, Young Adult

The Emerald Circus Review

  • Carrie
    January 1, 1970
    The Emerald Circus by Jane Yolen is a collection of short stories with an introduction to the works done by author Holly Black. I do believe some of these by Yolen at least have been published before but I was not familiar with her work so the entire collection was new to me. I'm not a huge fan of short stories myself but when seeing this I realized that some of the collection included stories on some of my favorite stories such as Peter Pan, the Wizard of Oz and Alice in Wonderland so of course The Emerald Circus by Jane Yolen is a collection of short stories with an introduction to the works done by author Holly Black. I do believe some of these by Yolen at least have been published before but I was not familiar with her work so the entire collection was new to me. I'm not a huge fan of short stories myself but when seeing this I realized that some of the collection included stories on some of my favorite stories such as Peter Pan, the Wizard of Oz and Alice in Wonderland so of course I had to check this one out. Of course when all was said and done my favorites are the ones I was looking forward to reading although there were a few others within the book that I also quite enjoyed too. There were however a few stories that I wondered why they were even included as there didn't seem to be much to them but perhaps someone that loves short stories overall would enjoy them more than myself who is always thinking were is the rest of this when it comes to short stories or books. I think though that regardless of being a huge fan of this type of read if you are interested in retellings and new twists on old classics then you'll at least enjoy those stories. I received an advance copy from the publisher via NetGalley.For more reviews please visit https://carriesbookreviews.wordpress....
    more
  • Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽
    January 1, 1970
    4 stars, maybe 4.5, for this wonderful collection of fantasy short stories by the talented Jane Yolen, to be published November 2017. Fairy tales, Arthurian characters, and historical figures like Emily Dickinson and Edgar Allen Poe hop in Yolen's car to go for a ride, veer wildly off the road and end up careering madly around the hills and valleys.Peter Pan gets a truly delightful feminist twist, Alice makes a return trip to Wonderland and has to face her greatest fear in the Jabberwock, Beauty 4 stars, maybe 4.5, for this wonderful collection of fantasy short stories by the talented Jane Yolen, to be published November 2017. Fairy tales, Arthurian characters, and historical figures like Emily Dickinson and Edgar Allen Poe hop in Yolen's car to go for a ride, veer wildly off the road and end up careering madly around the hills and valleys.Peter Pan gets a truly delightful feminist twist, Alice makes a return trip to Wonderland and has to face her greatest fear in the Jabberwock, Beauty and the Beast channel The Gift of the Magi with an outcome that I definitely did not expect, Robin Hood's mother has a terrifying request to make of his nurse when her son is born, Emily Dickinson meets a space alien, and many more. Except for one, these are previously published stories, and several of them were in a different Yolen short story collection, Sister Emily's Lightship and Other Stories, but I'd only read one of them before. Yolen also includes some insightful story notes at the end, as well as newly written poems that are topically related to each story. They're actually very good poetry.Full review to come, closer to the November publication date.I received a free copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley for review. Thank you!
    more
  • Vivian
    January 1, 1970
    I wasn't sure what to expect, but I like fairytales and the cover screamed, "Take me. You love me."Many of them are tangential storylines based on children lit masterpieces or the authors: Peter Pan, Alice In Wonderland (a few inspirations), Wizard of Oz. Fun, clever, and the tone employed for each is reflective of the original work, but with a critical twist in perspective or takeaway.Then the stories move to series of Arthurian legends, a fae as well as some folklore inspired stories, and famo I wasn't sure what to expect, but I like fairytales and the cover screamed, "Take me. You love me."Many of them are tangential storylines based on children lit masterpieces or the authors: Peter Pan, Alice In Wonderland (a few inspirations), Wizard of Oz. Fun, clever, and the tone employed for each is reflective of the original work, but with a critical twist in perspective or takeaway.Then the stories move to series of Arthurian legends, a fae as well as some folklore inspired stories, and famous personalities like Queen Victoria and Disraeli and Edgar Allan Poe. These are darker in tone. Some are definitely stronger than others, and some are longer than others, but overall I think it is a diverting collection of short stories. Perfect for reading right before bed as you settle in for the night. Never fear, there are end notes about the inspirations for each of the stories to appease reader curiosity. This is a nice collection, somewhere between 3.5-4 stars in rating terms. I recommend it to readers who enjoy original takes inspired by classics.~Copy provided by NetGalley~
    more
  • Dannii Elle
    January 1, 1970
    This is a mixed bag of stories, in all genres and styles, all combined by their (sometimes tenuous) links to original fairy tales, myths, and legends. These short retellings received a mixture of responses for me, with some being deceptively clever and poignantly written, to others falling short and feeling rather pointless. Whilst I enjoyed finding the myriad of original tales mentioned and did find this a well-written anthology, I wasn't sold on every one of the tales gathered within, and ther This is a mixed bag of stories, in all genres and styles, all combined by their (sometimes tenuous) links to original fairy tales, myths, and legends. These short retellings received a mixture of responses for me, with some being deceptively clever and poignantly written, to others falling short and feeling rather pointless. Whilst I enjoyed finding the myriad of original tales mentioned and did find this a well-written anthology, I wasn't sold on every one of the tales gathered within, and therefore could only give a mediocre star rating. This is, however, well-worth a read as some gems await to be discovered within.Andersen’s Witch - 4/5 starsThis focuses on the son of a washerwoman and a shoemaker. Right from the very beginning this seemed to evoke the classic fairy tale vibe, even before the intermission of any magical disturbances. Discontent with his life of poverty and struggle young Hans makes a bargain with the Ice Maiden that will see his current position in life reversed as he ages. But making a deal with the Ice Maiden is fraught with difficulties and loop-holes, as Hans will soon find out for himself.I enjoyed this tale but right up until the last few paragraphs wondered what the point of it all would be. Once the ending was revealed it completely changed the tone of the preceding writing and turned this into a joyful, lovely little piece.This also showcased some truly lovely penmanship. Peppered with lovely expressions, such as “a low cloud cover, like a well-made bed, kept everything neat and tidy”, I was eager to carry on with this collection to see if the others would prove to be as captivating.Lost Girls - 4/5 starsFrom the title I had assumed this to be a Peter Pan retelling, but with switched genders for the young island inhabitants. The appearance of Captain Hook in the very first paragraph proved this assumption correct.This revoked the darkness of the original Peter Pan tale, rather than retelling the Disney version, as Peter isn’t content with just one Wendy and has stolen a total of sixteen young girls to serve him and his horde of lost boys.This is a modern feminist re-visioning of the Wendys’ fate. The expectations of the females to serve the males is accepted by all the previous Wendys, taken from throughout history and seen as figureheads of their individual time periods, but it takes the modern-day Wendy to inform them of the unfairness of this treatment. With new notions of gender equality invading their thoughts, the Wendy’s revolt! And through this political uprising the reader is made aware of the satirical and political edge to this tale, and a democratic community is created to replace the previously accepted dictatorship.Tough Alice - 4/5 starsThe original Alice is one of my favourite books so I was eagerly anticipating reading this re-telling. I was initially disappointed,as the first portion of this was just a whistle-stop tour of the events from the original. That is, until the battle with the Jaberwock.This felt most like a traditional fairy tale, as it was tinged with a moralistic edge that gave the events a wry feel. Despite its shortness this left the reader much to mull over and, again like the original tales, had an ageless and timeless appeal because of this.Blown Away - 3/5 starsThis Wizard of Oz retelling began much like the original, only with Toto’s fate being decidedly less wholesome than in the original. Once the tornado hit Dorothy’s farm and she disappeared with the winds, this follows the lives of those left behind to mourn her.When Dorothy returns she tells the story of what happened whilst she was far away. As part of the Emerald Circus, which this anthology is named after, she lived an extraordinary life before returning, seven years later, to her rural farm life. She changed the way the farm folk viewed their lives and inspired a yearn for otherness in some, or an acceptance of their lot in others. I found the ending of this as poignant as the others but it just missed out on the insightfulness the others seemed to achieve.A Knot of Toads - 2/5 starsThis probably had the best title of the collection and, so, I was intrigued and excited to begin reading it.It was easy to fall in love with a protagonist who loves books but the rest of the story kept me at a distance. For such a short piece there seemed too much preamble before the main point of the story. I also think the fantasy of the story is obvious to a reader who is aware of fables including amphibians. Once set up nothing happens for some time and I found this a dull addition to the anthology.The Quiet Monk - 3/5 starsThe Quiet Monk has come to join the brotherhood and share the burden that haunts him. His mysterious past makes him the focus of much speculation and eagerness to learn what drove him to wandering and religion.This brought some much needed diversity to the collection and, whilst I was not aware of any original tale it was based from, enjoyed the legends evoked in the piece. This was another slower paced story, like the last three, yet I thought it worked well in this instance.The Bird - 4/5 starsThis begun with a hilarious anecdote of a bird who defecates wherever it lands. Its owner is at the end of his tether with his uncontrollable pet. But however negatively he feels towards it, he feels quite the opposite for Virginia. This object of his affections is brought to meet the bird but It ends up delivering far more than just amusement.Despite the shortness of this piece it managed to deliver a surprise ending that belied the frivolity of its beginning. In a Gothic twist of events this managed to completely turn the tone of the tale around in just a few paragraphs.Belle Bloody Merciless Dame - 3/5 starsThe reader is invited to feel nothing but dislike and distrust for the protagonist, who willingly cheats on his betrothed during his bachelor party. I adore stories with unlikable focal characters, so this immediately intrigued me. Before this even got started it seemed to end, however, which stunted my enjoyment.The Jewel in the Toad Queen’s Crown - 3/5 starsThis follows on, in dual perspectives, from one discussions between two individuals - Disraeli and Queen Victoria. Whilst with a distinct magical twist, the basis for this story is authentic and an unlikely friendship did, in fact, form between the renowned duo.This is a fascinating insight to the historical period detailed. Discussions of religion and belief dominate and form much of the text’s focus. Through these conversations a heartening relationship is formed and the reader is privy to its conception.The Gift of the Magician’s - 2/5 starsThe note by the title exclaims ‘with apologies for You Know Who’, which evoked a link to Harry Potter, in my mind. Immediately, though, the reader is introduced to Belle and the Beast, which confused me, before this quickly transforming into an Alice in Wonderland retelling. There was too much going on in this one for me to understand any of it.The Lady of the Greenwood - 4/5 starsI believe this is my first ever Robin Hood retelling so I was intrigued with what I was going to discover. This begun nothing like the original tale and with no discernible links to it. A boy is born on the stroke of midnight and, with instructions from his now deceased mother, the midwife is to deliver him to the fae who reside in the forest. The woman’s journey through the glade is penned with a poetic beauty that made me feel the dappled moonlight and gentle stroke of leaves, as we made our way to the forest’s heart together. It also made me feel the creep of dread with what possibilities could lay in the shadows.Despite enjoying this tale I wondered where the links to the renowned Robin Hood would come about. The reader is not provided with this information until the very last line. This, like the earlier pieces in this collection, used the withholding of information to the story’s power and made this a far stronger piece by doing so.The Confession of Brother Blaise - 3/5 starsThis tale was set in the year 1125, in a monastery. A young girl falls pregnant within the confines of the monastery walls and claims it to be the product of a liaison that happened entirely inside her dreams. Despite the brothers of the monastery crying of the devil’s work, I could not help but to see links between this story and that of the biblical birth of Jesus. Whether that was the author’s intention or not, I can not say.
    more
  • Maica Cruz
    January 1, 1970
    I received an e-arc of this book via NetGallery. (NetGallery is an amazing platform that connects authors with their readers. I sincerely hope that you check it out) I say thanks to the author and the publisher for putting your trust in me.“Did you wish for happiness?” The stories were well thought out and well written. The author provided a darker and a more unique twist to our favorite childhood stories. My favorite was the first story, Andersen's Witch, with Blown Away being a close second. I received an e-arc of this book via NetGallery. (NetGallery is an amazing platform that connects authors with their readers. I sincerely hope that you check it out) I say thanks to the author and the publisher for putting your trust in me.“Did you wish for happiness?” The stories were well thought out and well written. The author provided a darker and a more unique twist to our favorite childhood stories. My favorite was the first story, Andersen's Witch, with Blown Away being a close second. The only problem I had with this book was its length. It was just too long for my taste. I wished the author lengthened the good stories and cut the bad ones. I enjoy reading short stories but reading one after another really put a damper on my reading mood. It feels like I haven't accomplished anything though I had already finished tons of other stories. Of course, that is just my preference when it comes to books. Other than that issue, I think the book served its purpose well.
    more
  • Katy
    January 1, 1970
    I received my copy free through NetgalleyJane Yolen does not usually disappoint and most of these stories are good. I'm just not a short story fan
  • Mike
    January 1, 1970
    A collection of short fiction by Jane Yolen. Yolen is known for her fairy-tale retellings, but she doesn't restrict herself to fairy tales here, by any means - though several of the stories combine fairy tales with other literature, history, or author biography. The first story, for example, blends the real life of Hans Christian Anderson (to whom Yolen has been compared) with his story of the Snow Queen; the last has Emily Dickinson in space. In between are several Alice in Wonderland stories, A collection of short fiction by Jane Yolen. Yolen is known for her fairy-tale retellings, but she doesn't restrict herself to fairy tales here, by any means - though several of the stories combine fairy tales with other literature, history, or author biography. The first story, for example, blends the real life of Hans Christian Anderson (to whom Yolen has been compared) with his story of the Snow Queen; the last has Emily Dickinson in space. In between are several Alice in Wonderland stories, a Peter Pan and Wendy story, a Robin Hood story, a Wizard of Oz story, several Arthurian stories (something else for which the author is known), and stories that play off such diverse originals as Keats' "La Belle Dame Sans Merci" and O. Henry's "The Gift of the Magi" (mashed up with "Beauty and the Beast"). There's one based on Scottish history and legend, with no specific literary model that I noticed, and another on the relationship between Queen Victoria and Disraeli (involving kabbala). The author's note at the end talks interestingly about each story, interleaved with poems. Frequently, especially early on in the book, the fictional heroines fight (with some effectiveness) against the patriarchy, but that's not the only theme of the book. The lure and terror of the wonderful is probably the most dominant impression I took away, which is a very fairy-tale element. Did I love it? I'd have to say I didn't completely love it, and one or two of the stories (such as the Oz one) fell a bit flat for me, being more a series of odd events than a story with an arc of development. That could just be a matter of my taste, or mood at the time I was reading. Yolen is a highly skilled, and highly literate, author, and at their best the stories were moving and thought-provoking. I received a review copy from Netgalley.
    more
  • Melanti
    January 1, 1970
    I'm a fan of Yolen, but I've found she doesn't re-read very well. That's a problem for a collection like this where there's only a couple of new stories. Luckily, I don't read a ton of multi-author anthologies, so I'd only read about 1/4 of the stories before.If you haven't already read "Lost Girls", you should definitely find a collection that has it - and this is as good as any! I loved that story the first time around, though I've liked it a bit less each succeeding time and it's anthologized I'm a fan of Yolen, but I've found she doesn't re-read very well. That's a problem for a collection like this where there's only a couple of new stories. Luckily, I don't read a ton of multi-author anthologies, so I'd only read about 1/4 of the stories before.If you haven't already read "Lost Girls", you should definitely find a collection that has it - and this is as good as any! I loved that story the first time around, though I've liked it a bit less each succeeding time and it's anthologized so often I'm a bit tired of it by now, and skipped it entirely this time around. A couple of my favorites were:"Andersen's Witch", which is Hans Christian Andersen's life told as a fairy tale, as if it were the inspiration for his "The Snow Queen." It's a bit preachy in spots, but since HCA's work itself is a bit preachy, that works just fine."Blown Away", which is the titular story of the collection. It's The Wizard of Oz, but focusing on the family Dorothy left behind when she was blown away to the Emerald Circus. "The Bird", which is a fun little tribute to Edgar Allan Poe.Sadly, most of the rest of the stories seemed to be 3 star reads for me but, again, I don't find Yolen very re-readable and I remember liking several of these better the first time around. So if I were coming at these all from a new-to-Yolen perspective, that might have bumped it up to 4 stars. You can check my status updates for individual story notes, though a couple of the last ones got misplaced.
    more
  • Marissa
    January 1, 1970
    One small issue with this... I didn't realize it was a collection of Yolan's stories and was hoping for new stories but I love Yolan so I loved this collection!!! It's the best fairy tale reimaginings ever...
  • Nostalgia Reader
    January 1, 1970
    3.5 stars.Full review to come closer to publication date!Thank you to NetGalley for providing me with a free copy to review!
  • Kris
    January 1, 1970
    Each story is unique and magical. I loved it from start to finish.
  • CJ
    January 1, 1970
    Personally, I love short story collections. The talent and skill it takes to create an entire story and fit it into a few pages honestly blows me away sometimes. With Jane Yolen’s The Emerald Circus, I didn’t know what I was expecting, but regardless, it was well beyond my expectations. Not only is her writing style engaging and captivating, but the stories themselves are magical and fantastic to read. Every story in this collection is a retelling or recreation of stories or characters or histor Personally, I love short story collections. The talent and skill it takes to create an entire story and fit it into a few pages honestly blows me away sometimes. With Jane Yolen’s The Emerald Circus, I didn’t know what I was expecting, but regardless, it was well beyond my expectations. Not only is her writing style engaging and captivating, but the stories themselves are magical and fantastic to read. Every story in this collection is a retelling or recreation of stories or characters or historical figures many of us are familiar with, from The Wizard of Oz, Peter Pan, and Alice in Wonderland to Edgar Allan Poe, Emily Dickinson, and Hans Christian Andersen.The stories focus on different vantage points or alternate outcomes of stories that have enthralled the world for centuries. Have you ever wondered about where the famed sword of Arthurian legend, Excalibur, came from? Have you ever wondered how Hans Christian Andersen, a poor young man with little education became one of the most iconic and legendary storytellers in history? Have you ever wondered if Alice ever returned to Wonderland years and years later? All of these questions, these what-ifs, are answered in this collection in a fresh and charming style. It’s as if all of these characters and stories have come alive again through Yolen’s style.The stories are full of magic and wonder, reminding you of those fairy tales you read or heard or even watched as a child, and yet, they are more than just fairy tales. They are an open invitation to exercise your childish imagination, to ask yourself “What if this had happened? How would the story have changed? Or how did this historical figure accomplish a seemingly impossible task? Was there magic involved or was it simply destiny?” There is so much playroom for one’s imagination to run wild with these stories and that is what makes this collection is such a joy to read. I loved every moment of this book and I couldn’t find anything wrong with it. It grabbed my attention and I found myself wanting more of these stories. It left me thinking of other legendary characters or people and other fairy tales or myths, wondering how they came to be, if the stories we’re familiar with were true or whether there was indeed magic involved. If you are a fan of science fiction or fantasy, the classics or poetry, fairy tales or children’s stories, this book has something for everyone. I give this book a solid 5★s! The book will be released on November 14th, 2017 and I wholeheartedly recommend it!
    more
  • ☘Tara Sheehan☘
    January 1, 1970
    I like collections of short stories because when you are not in the mood or have the time to read a full length novel sometimes it’s nice to pick one of these up, blow through a quick story to pass the time and still feel like you achieved that satisfying ending. No lingering questions of what is going to happen, who did what, how is the author possibly going to make this all work, etc because you got all your answers in those few minutes you had to read – hence ‘short’ story.Yolen kind of screw I like collections of short stories because when you are not in the mood or have the time to read a full length novel sometimes it’s nice to pick one of these up, blow through a quick story to pass the time and still feel like you achieved that satisfying ending. No lingering questions of what is going to happen, who did what, how is the author possibly going to make this all work, etc because you got all your answers in those few minutes you had to read – hence ‘short’ story.Yolen kind of screwed me over with this one because I found her writing so intriguing and was absolutely captivated by her take on well-known fairytale and literary figures I couldn’t stop at just one or two I had to read through her whole collection including the poems and story notes at the end. If you know someone who likes fairytales, who is even a fan of Hans Christian Anderson, then you’re going to want to pick this up which luckily for you comes out before the Christmas holiday – there I just helped you mark an item off your list.Yolen’s story notes with the poems at the end are worth it all by themselves to pick this up as you feel like you get to know her, as if she’s sitting with you by the fire one late wintry night spinning tales to enthrall and bemuse you. She is the epitome of what the title “storyteller” hopes to define.I have never read anything by her before and more is the pity that I have missed out on years’ worth of being entertained by her talent. In the Irish culture from which my family comes the Storyteller, or SeanchaÍ, was held in high esteem. They kept the histories alive and were heavily relied on since they were the only way to keep them from getting lost. Yolen does a remarkable job of taking up the torch in spirit.You get to relive stories and people from long ago in a whole new way such as Peter Pan, Wizard of Oz, Anderson’s Snow Queen, Alice in Wonderland, Edgar Allen Poe with his Raven, Robin Hood, legends from Arthur’s genre and nods to works from across time periods and cultures. Her work entertains certainly but it also leaves you feeling intellectually satisfied.
    more
  • Megan
    January 1, 1970
    [Disclaimer: I was provided a free e-copy of this book from NetGalley for review purposes.]Jane Yolen has been a longtime favorite of mine. I guess you could say, a lifelong favorite of mine. I started reading her in middle school, I think (at least, that's the point at which I became aware of the authors of the books I enjoyed). Her Sister Light, Sister Dark trilogy, and the Jackaroo books are probably the ones I enjoyed the most. But in all my years of being a Yolenite, I've never actually rea [Disclaimer: I was provided a free e-copy of this book from NetGalley for review purposes.]Jane Yolen has been a longtime favorite of mine. I guess you could say, a lifelong favorite of mine. I started reading her in middle school, I think (at least, that's the point at which I became aware of the authors of the books I enjoyed). Her Sister Light, Sister Dark trilogy, and the Jackaroo books are probably the ones I enjoyed the most. But in all my years of being a Yolenite, I've never actually read any of her short stories or poetry.Jane Yolen has published over 300 books. And I have yet to find one that I don't enjoy. This collection of short stories, mostly published elsewhere before, were almost entirely "twists" on the traditional. The opening story about Hans Christian Andersen started the book off with a punch to the gut. I loved almost every story that followed. The one with the take on Red Riding Hood wasn't very interesting to me, and I wasn't sure exactly what to think of the one with all the frogs and witches (although I did enjoy it). I think my favorite of the bunch was the story about the island of women, where Guinevere gets her start. The story about the monk's confession did not immediately strike me as being about Merlin's birth because I'm not wholly versed in his mythology, but once that was explained (in the notes at the end - make sure you read those!), I liked it a whole heck of a lot more.This was a quick read, as I find most short story collections to be. It is definitely one worth reading. I loved it! It's a little funny that this is being released this year, as I just re-read Sister Light, Sister Dark a few months ago. Up until then I hadn't read a Yolen book in years. It was sitting on the shelf in my bedroom staring at me, and so I picked it up and loved it all over again. Seeing this on the NetGalley roster brought back a flood of emotions. I was excited to read The Emerald Circus, and was not disappointed in the least.
    more
  • Andreea Marin
    January 1, 1970
    4.5Full review here: https://infinitetext.blog/2017/07/17/...The Emerald Circus is an excellent collection of fairy tale ‘retellings’ written by Nebula Award-winning author Jane Yolen. Although I use the term “fairy tale retellings” since it is a labelled sub-genre, Yolen’s collection incorporates the retelling of more than just fairy tales. Children’s books like The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, and Peter Pan are also retold in this short story format from different 4.5Full review here: https://infinitetext.blog/2017/07/17/...The Emerald Circus is an excellent collection of fairy tale ‘retellings’ written by Nebula Award-winning author Jane Yolen. Although I use the term “fairy tale retellings” since it is a labelled sub-genre, Yolen’s collection incorporates the retelling of more than just fairy tales. Children’s books like The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, and Peter Pan are also retold in this short story format from different perspectives, as well as Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Raven” and Emily Dickinson’s lifestyle and inspiration. The third category of retellings in this collection is of medieval legends of Camelot and Robin Hood. “The Quiet Monk” is the story of the hidden grave which supposedly had Arthur and Guinevere’s bodies in it which falls under Arthurian Retellings along with “The Confession of Brother Blaise,” and “Evian Steel.” Some of the short stories in this collection have been previously published in anthologies, or individually. For instance, “Lost Girls” the feminist retelling of Peter Pan where women riot and protest for their rights in Neverland won the Nebula Award in 1999 and has been published in Twelve Impossible Things Before Breakfast.The Emerald Circus is a great introduction to Jane Yolen as it incorporates works from various points in her writing career. This anthology includes all the stories that haunt us past childhood and stay with us in a collective imaginary space. Arthurian Legends, Children’s Literature, and 19th Century American gothic poets share a fantastical quality that remains a point of comparison when reading contemporary literature. At the end of the collection of retellings, Yolen takes a few pages to explain how the idea for each of these stories came about. As a big fan of Peter Pan and Neverland retellings, “Lost Girls” was the story that stayed with me most. I would recommend to everyone.
    more
  • Rebecca
    January 1, 1970
    At a GlanceGenre(s)/Categories:Adult fantasy, short story collection, fairy talesPlot:In this short story collection, readers are swept away with familiar characters to re-imagined lands and tales. Wendy leads a labor strike in Neverland. Dorothy learns to tightrope walk. And Emily Dickinson travels the stars. This collection of 10 stories is mesmerizing at every page turn.Pros:I love fairy tales re-imagined and this collection is fantastic.Every story is accompanied by an author's note and a po At a GlanceGenre(s)/Categories:Adult fantasy, short story collection, fairy talesPlot:In this short story collection, readers are swept away with familiar characters to re-imagined lands and tales. Wendy leads a labor strike in Neverland. Dorothy learns to tightrope walk. And Emily Dickinson travels the stars. This collection of 10 stories is mesmerizing at every page turn.Pros:I love fairy tales re-imagined and this collection is fantastic.Every story is accompanied by an author's note and a poemJane Yolen has taken well-known characters and made the fresh and newEach story stands alone while simultaneously weaving together similar themesCons:I could have read 10 more stories!I wish the author's story notes would have accompanied each story instead of being in the back of the book (it was difficult to flip back and forth on my Kindle) Would I recommend this title:Yes, yes, yes!Full Review:I am a big fan of Jane Yolen's children's books. So I was excited to be able to read some of her adult work as well. This book did not disappoint. My experience with short story collections is that they are usually a mixed bag--there are a few great stories mixed in with some not so great stories. That was not the case with The Emerald Circus. Almost every one of Jane's stories knocked it out of the park for me. Just as each act in a circus can be enjoyed on its own but also serves to make the whole circus better, each story in The Emerald Circus is satisfying by itself while also enriching the whole. Jane is a master storyteller and I would highly recommend this to anyone that enjoys storytelling at it's finest.
    more
  • Lorna (Loz) Parsons
    January 1, 1970
    This was...not what I was expecting. I requested (and got accepted, obviously!) this book from Netgalley thinking it would be a Wizard of Oz retelling, with other fairytale characters coming into play, as a circus. I wasn't completely wrong, this is a fairytale retelling, but it's not characters in a circus! Despite it not being anything like I thought it was, I still really enjoyed it and a full, more in depth review will be on my blog closer to the publication date. What this actually was is a This was...not what I was expecting. I requested (and got accepted, obviously!) this book from Netgalley thinking it would be a Wizard of Oz retelling, with other fairytale characters coming into play, as a circus. I wasn't completely wrong, this is a fairytale retelling, but it's not characters in a circus! Despite it not being anything like I thought it was, I still really enjoyed it and a full, more in depth review will be on my blog closer to the publication date. What this actually was is a collection of short stories. They're all fairytale retellings, in a way, some of them appear to be a satire take on the original stories. Some of them, like the Peter Pan retelling (titled Lost Girls, one of my favourites in the whole novel), are just a different perspective of the character. Although I haven't done too much research on the writers and their stories/inspirations, I am very into fairytales. I haven't even read many, but I find them so incredibly interesting. In order to enjoy this, I think you have to at least enjoy fairytales. You'll also have to like things that are a little messed up. 4/5. Will probably purchase the finished version when it's released. I want this on my shelves.
    more
  • Gwen - Chew & Digest Books -
    January 1, 1970
    I thoroughly enjoyed this peek behind the curtain or second look at the fairy tale characters we all know and love. These short stories, based on those longer works most of us know, are the perfect length because of that and I quickly lost my hesitation and aversion to shorts story collections. What would happen if Alice, of Wonderland fame, got the courage that the Cowardly Lion craved or if, in fact, the Cowardly Lion has his role usurped by the bearded woman of the circus? Just how did Merlin I thoroughly enjoyed this peek behind the curtain or second look at the fairy tale characters we all know and love. These short stories, based on those longer works most of us know, are the perfect length because of that and I quickly lost my hesitation and aversion to shorts story collections. What would happen if Alice, of Wonderland fame, got the courage that the Cowardly Lion craved or if, in fact, the Cowardly Lion has his role usurped by the bearded woman of the circus? Just how did Merlin get his wisdom and what were Robin Hood's roots?I got a kick out of all of them and it made me look at the originals in a new way and wondering what they teach our children. With a few tweaks, they could walk away with something quite different for the rest of their lives. Think of the effect the Disney Princesses have had on a certain generation of now youngish women and how different they would be if given the same treatment? The mind abounds with possibilities. I will admit, I have been remiss and this was the first of Yolen's work I had ever read and now I find myself scrambling to catch up. I can't wait!
    more
  • Kristie
    January 1, 1970
    Jane Yolen’s collection THE EMERALD CIRCUS is pure delight for anyone who craves inspired retellings of classics from literature, or re-imaginings of the lives of real literary figures. Yolen takes a slanted look at the lives of Emily Dickinson, Hans Christian Andersen, and Edgar Allen Poe, and she creates some stellar “what if” moments for Lancelot, Dorothy (from Oz), Alice (from Wonderland), and others. Yolen’s writing is beautiful, her pacing is perfect, and the way she takes stories that hav Jane Yolen’s collection THE EMERALD CIRCUS is pure delight for anyone who craves inspired retellings of classics from literature, or re-imaginings of the lives of real literary figures. Yolen takes a slanted look at the lives of Emily Dickinson, Hans Christian Andersen, and Edgar Allen Poe, and she creates some stellar “what if” moments for Lancelot, Dorothy (from Oz), Alice (from Wonderland), and others. Yolen’s writing is beautiful, her pacing is perfect, and the way she takes stories that have been done over and over again in a whole new direction is sublime. My favorite part of the collection (if I have to choose just one) is her take on Peter Pan and Wendy’s story in which Peter and the Lost Boys are pretty contemptible, and the girls of Neverland exist only to serve them until… well, you should read it and find out.It’s rare to find a short story collection that doesn’t contain at least one “meh” story, but THE EMERALD CIRCUS nails it, and my sincere thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for a copy of the e-book in exchange for my honest review.
    more
  • Elaine -
    January 1, 1970
    First, this book really doesn't have anything to do with a circus. Yes, there is a chapter loosely based on The Wizard of Oz where Dorothy comes back as a circus performer, but that's about it. The book is several chapters of fairy tales and myths being retold. Some of the retellings have a modern twist and some are just the same story with a few things changed.I am not impressed with this book. Jane Yolen has written over 300 books, poems, short stories, etc. and has won a lot of awards. I was First, this book really doesn't have anything to do with a circus. Yes, there is a chapter loosely based on The Wizard of Oz where Dorothy comes back as a circus performer, but that's about it. The book is several chapters of fairy tales and myths being retold. Some of the retellings have a modern twist and some are just the same story with a few things changed.I am not impressed with this book. Jane Yolen has written over 300 books, poems, short stories, etc. and has won a lot of awards. I was expecting so much more from her than these watered down versions of the original. The cover art is fantastic and the title is intriguing. I'm sure both of those factors will draw people in to read this book. Unfortunately, I feel they will be highly disappointed in the stories.If you are looking for an intriguing read about a circus I would highly recommend that you pick up The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern and pass on this book.
    more
  • Ron
    January 1, 1970
    The Emerald Circus is a collection of Jan Yolen's stories that have appeared in other anthologies or magazines first. But do no hold that against these stories. They needed to appear somewhere and it is very nice that they have been gathered here for the reader to enjoy. In the book are tales of adventure, trickery and magic woven into familiar stories that have been bent out of their normal shape. There is a tale of Beauty and the Beast after the end of the normal tale. Dorthy of Oz fame gets a The Emerald Circus is a collection of Jan Yolen's stories that have appeared in other anthologies or magazines first. But do no hold that against these stories. They needed to appear somewhere and it is very nice that they have been gathered here for the reader to enjoy. In the book are tales of adventure, trickery and magic woven into familiar stories that have been bent out of their normal shape. There is a tale of Beauty and the Beast after the end of the normal tale. Dorthy of Oz fame gets a backstory from one of the farmhands. There are a trio of Arthurian tales scattered through the book along with a young Hans Christian Anderson making deals while Emily Dickinson manages to take a very far trip. And one must not forget Alice or Wendy and their adventures. So if you enjoy good storytelling, sit your self down with your favorite beverages and snacks and settle in for an enjoyable read!
    more
  • Lena
    January 1, 1970
    This is an absolutely delightful collection of short stories by the masterful Jane Yolen. When I saw this on Netgalley I knew I had to read it, and read it I did! I cannot resist re-tellings, I just can't. Jane Yolen's BRIAR ROSE is to blame for this affliction of mine. The stories in this collection run the gamut from Alice in Wonderland to Edgar Allen Poe. There is a good variety here, with a short and brutal retelling of Beauty and the Beast being followed by Arthurian legend. I think my favo This is an absolutely delightful collection of short stories by the masterful Jane Yolen. When I saw this on Netgalley I knew I had to read it, and read it I did! I cannot resist re-tellings, I just can't. Jane Yolen's BRIAR ROSE is to blame for this affliction of mine. The stories in this collection run the gamut from Alice in Wonderland to Edgar Allen Poe. There is a good variety here, with a short and brutal retelling of Beauty and the Beast being followed by Arthurian legend. I think my favorite has to be Lost Girls. What an unabashedly feminist take on Neverland!I can't say enough good things about this collection. Maybe I was in the right frame of mind. Maybe it's just what I needed when I needed it, but I devoured this book. I will definitely be doing a re-read and a more in-depth review to post online closer to the release date.
    more
  • Jess (bookwyrmbella)
    January 1, 1970
    Thanks to NetGalley and to the editor. I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.I have mixed feelings about this book. In general I love Jane Yolen's writing especially her retellings. However, I had a hard time getting through this book. There are definitely stories that I liked such as Andersen's Witch, Lost Girls, Blown Away and The Bird to name a few. But there were others that just took me some time to get through like A Knot of Toads, Belle Bloody Merciless Dame, The Thanks to NetGalley and to the editor. I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.I have mixed feelings about this book. In general I love Jane Yolen's writing especially her retellings. However, I had a hard time getting through this book. There are definitely stories that I liked such as Andersen's Witch, Lost Girls, Blown Away and The Bird to name a few. But there were others that just took me some time to get through like A Knot of Toads, Belle Bloody Merciless Dame, The Gift of the Magicians and Rabbit Hole. My favorite part of the book is actually the Author Notes and Poems at the end of the book where Jane explains the inspiration behind each of the stories and included a Poem for each as well. I would still recommend this to people who enjoy Jane Yolen's other works or retellings in general.
    more
  • Joe Crowe
    January 1, 1970
    This collection of short stories does not come out until November, but you are going to need to order it now. The author wins awards and writes cool, fantastical stories. I hate to admit that I was not familiar with Yolk before I read this book. Now I want to read everything of hers.The first two stories are a take on "Peter Pan" that stars Wendy. The next story is based on "Alice in Wonderland." The third stars Dorothy from "Wizard of Oz." I haven't even finished the book yet. It's too much. I This collection of short stories does not come out until November, but you are going to need to order it now. The author wins awards and writes cool, fantastical stories. I hate to admit that I was not familiar with Yolk before I read this book. Now I want to read everything of hers.The first two stories are a take on "Peter Pan" that stars Wendy. The next story is based on "Alice in Wonderland." The third stars Dorothy from "Wizard of Oz." I haven't even finished the book yet. It's too much. I don't really want to be done with it. Yolen has written a ton of stuff, so use this book as a sampler platter. She does fantasy without forgetting that sometimes it needs to be silly and fun. (Review from an advance copy.)
    more
  • Erikka
    January 1, 1970
    This story collection was really hit and miss. While I expect that from a story collection (they can't all be winners), I was disappointed to have that occur with a Jane Yolen collection. Anyone familiar with he'd knows she is one of the most consistent and solid authors in YA. She is a legend and rightfully so. That being said, some of these stories were excellent (her take on Beauty and the Beast meets Gift of the Magi was particularly fun), but most were either readable but forgettable or sim This story collection was really hit and miss. While I expect that from a story collection (they can't all be winners), I was disappointed to have that occur with a Jane Yolen collection. Anyone familiar with he'd knows she is one of the most consistent and solid authors in YA. She is a legend and rightfully so. That being said, some of these stories were excellent (her take on Beauty and the Beast meets Gift of the Magi was particularly fun), but most were either readable but forgettable or simply unreadable.
    more
  • Joe K
    January 1, 1970
    I received a free digital copy of the book from NetGalley in exchange for a review. I was really interested in this book when I heard about it, and there were some definite high points: “Evian Steel”, “The Confession of Brother Blaise”, and “The Quiet Monk” we’re particular favorites. None of the stories were bad, but some were definitely a slog to get through, despite my initial interest in them. The book was well written, but I just didn’t get into it like I thought I would. Still, a fun way t I received a free digital copy of the book from NetGalley in exchange for a review. I was really interested in this book when I heard about it, and there were some definite high points: “Evian Steel”, “The Confession of Brother Blaise”, and “The Quiet Monk” we’re particular favorites. None of the stories were bad, but some were definitely a slog to get through, despite my initial interest in them. The book was well written, but I just didn’t get into it like I thought I would. Still, a fun way to revisit some old fairy tales and fantasy stories.
    more
  • Kelly Tse
    January 1, 1970
    This was a delightful assortment of short stories that I quite enjoyed! There's an origin stories of sort for the Snow Queen, a feminist retelling of Peter Pan featuring the Lost Girls, a retelling of Dorothy... I just loved Yolen's approach. I enjoyed the stories more often than not, and I can't wait to read more of Yolen's other works.Note: This e-ARC was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own. But thank you Tachyon Publications!!!
    more
  • USOM
    January 1, 1970
    With any anthology of short stories it's hard to give a comprehensive review, but my rating is an average of all of my ratings for the short stories. On a whole, this had an interesting mix of stories, but that's also where it lost me. I was wanting some more cohesively dark or innovative. I was just missing an added factor, something that made them deeper. Disclaimer: I received this book in exchange for an honest review from Edelweiss.
    more
  • Ann
    January 1, 1970
    This is a delightful collection of short stories based on some classic books from your childhood. From Wendy in Peter Pan to Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz we have a premise that starts with the original story and takes a strange turn. Most of the stories are great for all ages of readers. The fantasy element is the common thread that keeps you turning the pages.
    more
  • Jim
    January 1, 1970
    Clearly there is a reason Jane Yolen has been read by almost everyone - from toddlers to adults. She is smart and researches things down to a tiny detail and yet makes it all like it came right out of her imagination.A wonderful collection to be read over and over and to be cherished like our childhood favorites.
    more
Write a review