Wednesday, August 7, 2013

[Blog Tour] Review & Giveaway - The Fairest of Them All by Carolyn Turgeon

I'm excited to be a part of the Fairest of Them All blog tour today! 
I had the opportunity to read this story and it was fantastic. 
I'm sharing my review with you along with the tour-wide giveaway.
Be sure & stop by the other blogs participating. I've included their links below.
Thanks for stopping by & good luck!

Release Date: August 6th, 2013
Publisher: Touchstone
288 pages

What if Rapunzel was Snow White’s evil stepmother? From the author of Godmother and Mermaid, The Fairest of Them All explores what happens when fairy tale heroines grow up and don’t live happily ever after.
Living in an enchanted forest, Rapunzel spends her days tending a mystical garden with her adoptive mother, Mathena. A witch, Mathena was banished from court because of her magic powers, though the women from the kingdom still seek her advice and herbal remedies. She waits, biding her time to exact revenge against those who betrayed her.
One day Rapunzel’s beautiful voice and long golden locks captivate a young prince hunting in the forest nearby. Overcome, he climbs her hair up to her chamber and they fall into each other’s arms. But their afternoon of passion is fleeting, and the prince must return to his kingdom, as he is betrothed to another.
Now king, he marries his intended to bring peace to his kingdom. They have a stunning daughter named Snow White. Yet the king is haunted by his memories of Rapunzel, and after the mysterious death of his wife, realizes he is free to marry the woman he never stopped longing for. In hopes of also replacing the mother of his beloved daughter, the king makes Rapunzel his queen.
But when Mathena’s wedding gift of an ancient mirror begins speaking to her, Rapunzel falls under its evil spell, and the king begins to realize that Rapunzel is not the beautiful, kind woman he dreamed of.

Don't be fooled by the gorgeous book cover with its beautiful colors and magical, romantic appeal. Although this novel does feature a stunning woman with luxurious golden hair, it's not a story of heartwarming romance. It's a wicked, twisted tale that brings together two beloved fairy tale characters, Rapunzel and Snow White. 

The Fairest of Them All comfortably fits into the category of dark fantasy, the subgenre that I can't get enough of, especially the stories that touch on subject matters that would make some readers uncomfortable..or even scare them away. I admire an author who isn't afraid to push the envelope and that's one of the many reasons why I love Turgeon's newest novel.

Many of the elements of this story you'll find familiar, but only in the beginning. Rapunzel lives in a tower and was raised by a witch. She enchants a young prince who climbs the tower using her long, golden locks so that they may be together. And, as in most versions of this story, she becomes pregnant with his child. But that's where many of the similarities end.

There are plenty of twists and a lot of heartache, deep betrayals, and complicated emotions. Rapunzel believes that her dreams have come true when she finally marries her king, but she ultimately learns that being the fairest woman in the kingdom, possessing beautiful, magical hair and having spells and potions at her disposal doesn't ensure her happily ever after. She also learns that you can't outrun your lies, magic comes with a price, and that a person who is beautiful on the outside can be very damaged and ugly on the inside. 

This was my first time reading a novel by Carolyn Turgeon, but it certainly won't be my last. In fact, after writing this review I'm heading over to Amazon to purchase Mermaid ... or maybe Godmother. They both sound so good, I can't decide.

~ Cat

Carolyn Turgeon is the author of five novels: Rain Village (2006), Godmother: The Secret Cinderella Story (2009), Mermaid (2011), which is being developed for film by Sony Pictures, and The Next Full Moon (2012), her first and only book for middle-grade readers. Her latest novel, The Fairest of Them All, comes out in August 2013 from Touchstone/Simon & Schuster and is about Rapunzel growing up to be Snow White's stepmother. She lives in Pennsylvania and New York and teaches fiction writing at the University of Alaska at Anchorage's Low-Residency MFA program. She's currently at work on a new novel about Dante's Beatrice, set in thirteenth-century Florence. 
Website | Twitter | Goodreads | Facebook | Pinterest | Mermaid Blog

Which fairy tale characters would you most like to see 
reimagined into a dark fantasy story?


Throughout August you can enter our 2nd blogoversary giveaway! 
Gain additional entries by commenting on any post this month.
Click here for full details.
a Rafflecopter giveaway


Beautiful Disaster said...

I would like to see Sleeping Beauty or The Little Mermaid used.
This sounds like an interesting read and I like the cover.
Thanks :-)

Beth W said...

This sounds awesome! I love a dark fairy tale retelling. I'd love to see Beauty and the Beast done darkly (although, the source tales are pretty darn dark on their own). Thanks!

Krista said...

The cover definitely looks more like a happy, fun book, but it sounds really interesting. I love it when authors mix fairy tales.

Rosa Patricia said...

Beautiful review. So glad you enjoyed The Fairest Of Them All and really happy to have you on our team!

Thank you so much for everything!

Patri & Rosa
The Unofficial Addiction Book Fan Club

Anonymous said...

I would love to see Cinderella or the Little Mermaid retold as a dark fantasy.

Great review Cat, this sounds like a good story. I'll be adding it to my TBR.

Anonymous said...


Talk Supe said...

This is one heck of a task list!

Anyway... Thanks for the review, I was a little apprehensive because I want a dark, honest to goodness fairy tale and it sounds like this is more Grimm than Disney.


Barbara E. said...

I think Little Red Riding Hood is pretty dark already, but I still think it would make for a great dark fantasy.

jmcgaugh said...

Interesting to combine Rapunzel with Snow White.

Pabkins @ Not Yet Read said...

Oh dang it sounds dark and delicious and so unlike the cover which is on the front. Now I'm excited. You can never outrun your lies that is for sure.

Post a Comment

Due to an increase in spam, all comments are moderated. Even if you do not see an "awaiting approval" message, please only submit your comment once. Sorry for the inconvenience.