Birdwing by Rafe Martin

Title: Birdwing
Author: Rafe Martin
Series : No, this is a stand alone book
Rating: stars_02

Do you know the Grimm Brother’s fairy tale  “The Six Swans”?  That’s the one about the  six brothers who were turned into swans, and how their sister undid the enchantment.  At least – she almost succeeded. At the end, the youngest brother’s left arm remained a swan wing.

Birdwing is the story of what happens next, as Ardwin grows up and tries to make sense of his divided loyalties – his memories of the wild life of a swan, and his need for acceptance in the world of humans.


detail from Eleanor Abbot’s illustration

Rafe Martin asks if it is possible to live “happily ever after” when your family has been so spectacularly torn apart. More

The Hamish Hamilton Book of Princesses

Continuing the  “Once Upon a Time Challenge” with a review of  The Hamish Hamilton Book of Princesses

Title: The Hamish Hamilton Book of Princesses
Edited by : Sally Patrick Johnson
Series :
There are many of these Hamish Hamilton collections – about Dragons, Goblins, Heroes, etc.

Illustrated by: Fritz Wegner
Rating:  stars_04

In Short: A collection of short stories about Princesses, by eclectic list of authors including Somerset Maugham,  Oscar Wilde,  James Thurber and AA Milne.


I expected this book  to be like a chocolate box of stories.  Lots of variety, certainly, but fundamentally …sweet.   But I was wrong.  A  better culinary metaphor would be a medieval banquet table, with sweet confections  next to the bizarre dishes- a boars head, maybe?  More