“Grim: Dark Fairy Tales for the Psychologically Minded” by Joseph Burgo

"Grim: Dark Fairy Tales for the Psychologically Minded" by Joseph Burgo

"Three classic fairy tales—the stories of Cinderella, Snow White, and Rapunzel—get a more sinister retelling in this three-novella collection by Burgo. Cinderella grapples with depression and a sense of dread about getting what she thought she wanted, Snow White’s mother hones her psychopathic tendencies to try to kill her daughter, and Rapunzel must deal with mommy issues and self-worth. Burgo creates strong narratives that add nuance and sophistication to these tales; the titular grimness manifests as sexual violence, rape fantasies, and ruthless seductresses. These three novella-length tales explore psychological themes latent in the classic Grimm versions. Rather than presenting two-dimensional "good" heroines pitted against "evil" step-mothers, Grim portrays fully realized characters grappling with shame and self-doubt, suffering at the hands of mothers best thought of as narcissistic in modern terminology. Due to their dark themes and some graphic sexual material, these tales are not for the faint of heart and are unsuitable for children."