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The Blue Fairy Book

Andrew Lang

Book Overview: 

Andrew Lang’s Blue Fairy Book is a beautifully produced and illustrated edition of fairy tales that has become a classic. This was followed by many other collections of fairy tales, collectively known as Andrew Lang’s Fairy Books.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .Aladdin told his mother about the lamp. She begged him to sell it, and have nothing to do with devils. "No," said Aladdin, "since chance hath made us aware of its virtues, we will use it, and the ring likewise, which I shall always wear on my finger." When they had eaten all the genie had brought, Aladdin sold one of the silver plates, and so on until none were left. He then had recourse to the genie, who gave him another set of plates, and thus they lived for many years.

One day Aladdin heard an order from the Sultan proclaimed that everyone was to stay at home and close his shutters while the Princess, his daughter, went to and from the bath. Aladdin was seized by a desire to see her face, which was very difficult, as she always went veiled. He hid himself behind the door of the bath, and peeped through a chink. The Princess lifted her veil as she went in, and looked so beautiful that Aladdin fell in love with her at first sight. He went home so changed that. . . Read More

Community Reviews

I always loved fairytales when I was a little kid––and no, not the silly watered-down ones. I liked the real, hardcore shit. The fairytales where everyone dies. Those are the good ones. Those Disney princess movies always bored me. (Except I loved Beauty and the Beast, because Belle isn't a dumba...more

I can't believe the level of nostalgia this book created. Not every story is equally memorable, but the ones that lingered over decades (yes, plural!) in my mind make this worth every star.

It would appear that Lang compiled these stories "as is" without any editing. Some were very good and some were very bad. It didn't help that the narrator of my audiobook version got very screechy with some of her voices.

Still, it was a fascinating look at some of the original versions of famous...more

Lang wrote some of the stories, but he largely edited this collection. Like the Grimms, but far more honest, Lang used translations provided by his wife and other women (he thanks the women in his introduction, gives credit to original sources at the end of the tales).

It makes this collection, th...more

"She lives in a castle which lies east of the sun and west of the moon..."

Of all the fairy book spectrum, I'm glad I started with blue. More than a few old favourites in here, in particular the stories East of the Sun, West of the Moon, and Beauty and the Beast. It's lovely regardless, I think, t...more

Some of these are familiar - Red Riding Hood suffers a brutal end, Rumpelstiltskin gets ripped off again, Cinderella earns her name by cleaning out the chimney and having dainty feet, but Jack and the Giant-killer makes you wonder how we got the modern day Jack and the Beanstalk. Toss in a sedate...more

Thirty-seven stories which vary in length and enjoyability.
It was a fun read, I wouldn't read some of the stories to my nephews or my kids in the future.

From the famed The Blue Fairy Book, I learned that:

1. If you are a girl, and you are "beautiful", so amazingly pretty that sometimes, there are just no words to describe you, you might just survive whatever is coming at you next, because

2. The villains can never defeat the good, because someway o...more

3 stars for the audiobook; 4 stars for the book itself. See my review of the Kindle edition for a brief review of the book.

While I thought that Angele Masters did some very good voices (and a very good Scots accent for the last two tales), there were recurring mouth sounds (mostly sounds of swall...more

This collection contains many classic fairy tales and only a few that were new to me. Some stories are better than others, but mostly good. I was pleased to recognise some of the stories that I remembered from my childhood and that I had forgotten (Toads and Diamonds, Trusty John, The story of th...more

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