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About Feminist Fairy Tales,
with suggested titles

New Oz stories

Note To Children

Note To Educators

Similar Pages 

  Large Print Edition?


New Fairy Tales
by Rosemary Lake

Complete stories to read online

The Witch Princess
The Silent Castle
The Well at the World's End (or Well On the Way to It) 
The Statue Queen's Cave
The White Bear's Neckband 

The Baby from the Eagle's Nest
The Fisher-Girl and the Magic Flounder

And I Thank You, Too
The Black Toad's Mansion
The Prince in the Ivy Tower
The Wicker House
Panalou's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
The Three Magic Arrows
The Princess in Mouse-Wool
The Pirates' Prisoner
"The Never-Summer Mountain"




Excerpts from Stories
The complete stories are in  
Once Upon a Time When  
 the Princess Rescued the Prince

The Crystal Sphere
Sir Marzipan
Panallusia's Little Red Riding Hood
The Enchanted Tree
The Bear Princess
The Little Brother Who Cried “Wolf!"
Under the Glass Mountain
Queen-of-the-May and the Vampires
The Girl Who Could Not Shudder
The Flying Turnips
The False Dragonfly Queen

Selected Bibliography
For Teachers Only
Reader's Comments

The Preview ebook has those excerpts and these complete stories:
Panalou's Little Red Riding Hood
The Bear Princess
The False Dragonfly Queen

More Free Online Stories






Review at Heartland Reviews
by Jane Deskis ("4 hearts")

Reviews at Preschool Entertainment and compulsivereader.com
by Mary C. Legg

Review at Midwest Book Review by 'Pogo'

Review at greenmanreview.com
by Michael M. Jones

Review of this site from a Wesleyan University project

Similar Pages
          The sites below include links to my page and to pages similar to mine.
                     other links
  French Fairy Tales, Resource Page Wesleyan University. Includes review

Fairy Tales and Fantasy
P.L. Duffy Resource Centre, Trinity College, Western Australia

Kids' Page

Forms of Traditional Literature with Links Internet School Library Media Center.   Stories, Folklore, and Fairy Tales Theme Page 

An Internet Hotlist on Myths & fairytales created by S. Soulier
St. Mary High School

Folktales Internet School Library Media Center


The Best Children's Literature (On The Net) Compilation of links to available texts   

Strong Women Stories

Rose Daughter In Search of Cupid and Psyche: Myth and Legend in Children's Literature.   Kids and Literature SilverPlatter Information Services   Folk and Fairy Tales Beyond Yahoo: Book Links timeless_tales Read Alongs Read the words, hear the story; Grimms; Gutenberg Realms of Folklore    
Kids and Literature
Ferrum College AppLit
The Guide to Fiction on the Web
Beacon Hills College Library Smoky Mountain Story Tellers
Pike's Peak Library Distric
summer reading list
Fire Side Tales Fairy Tales and Fantasy Fairy Tales and Fables Resources Fairy Tale Sites

About Feminist Fairy Tales

My stories are both 'feminist' and 'fairy tales.' They keep all the traditional fairy tale elements, using strong, smart girls and women as the 'heros.' Often instead of the 'good king' there is a 'good queen,' and other helpers are 'good witches' and female animals. Most are re-tellings of old stories with the genders reversed; some are original with all good characters being strong females, and some feminist motifs such as maiden/mother/crone. Many feature non-traditional families. Though most villains are male, most male characters are good, and I show healthy male/female friendships and romances. Rather than a gender-switch which would have an active female rescuing a passive male, I make both characters smart and active, and show them cooperating. (In my one passive-rescuee tale, I had to shut him up in a golden keg through most of the story. But when the keg was opened, he jumped out with his sword drawn ready to fight! However "The Prince in the Ivy Tower" did prefer to stay home playing his flute, and that was okay too.)

Aside from those gender/plot changes (and some modernizing of the style and pace of storytelling, and some comic animals) I have tried to keep my tales as traditional as possible! (Well, I can't resist a few anachronisms for the fun of it.) Like Tolkien, Chesterton, Lewis, and Luthi, I love the fairytale world [ie, the world of 'Faerie'] where talking animals and magic are taken for granted. Events seem to happen almost randomly -- except that all adds up to everyone getting their just deserts, so it is really by the Law of Karma, or possibly what Myers called 'Delian Law' in his wonderful book Silverlock. Or what some call 'poetic justice.' And of course there's a sort of Law of Symbolism, that Maria von Franz and Bruno Bettelheim have described (though I do wish Bettelheim had read Alice Miller instead of Freud!).

In my tales I have tried to continue this sort of feeling, this sort of world -- what Luthi describes as a 'glass bead game.' Of course it varies; there's a lot of it in the middle of "Sir Marzipan", rather less in "The Well at the World's End," and hardly any in "The Little Brother who Cried 'Wolf!' ".

Feminist fairy tales with plots like mine can be found in collections such as Not One Damsel in Distress: World Folktales for Strong Girls by Jane Yolen, and Clever Gretchen (Amazon misspelled it :-) edited by Alison Lurie.

The following books at Amazon may also be worth checking:
Fearless Girls, Wise Women, and Beloved Sisters: Heroines in Folktales from Around the World
The Woman in the Moon: And Other Tales of Forgotten Heroines
The Serpent Slayer and Other Stories of Strong Women
Folktales of Strong Women (
Audio Cassette)

Tatterhood and Other Tales: Stories of Magic and Adventure
Cut from the Same Cloth: American Women of Myth, Legend and Tall Tale
Her Stories: African American Folktales, Fairy Tales, and True Tales (Coretta Scott King Author)

The first volume of Bruce Lansky's Girls to the Rescue #1 has tales which omit  the magic and magical helpers, as well as the romance, but keep much of the form of the folktale/fairytale. Barbara G. Walker's book Feminist Fairy Tales has revised versions of many old tales, but much more is changed, and they seem more for adults than for children -- parental discretion advised on some.

See also New Fairy Tale Resources and Other Links

Large Print Edition?

I wonder how many people would be interested in a Large Print edition of Once Upon A Time When The Princess Rescued The Prince? It would be another "trade paperback", slightly taller, in 18 point type, over 200 pages. Probably priced about $15-20 (like the current Large Print  edition of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe).  Email and let me know?


From "Fairy Tale Resource Page" at Wesleyan University,
http://mennis.web.wesleyan.edu/fist255s.mle.ftresources.html#Best Feminist Fairy Tales site

The Best Feminist Fairy Tales site is at.....
• http://www.rosemarylake.com
The interesting thing about these feminist fairy tales is that the story stays essentially the same but it has a new ending with the women saving themselves along with new feminist morals. -K Pasley... This site was the best because it was the only one I could find that centered around feminist fairy tales specifically, rather than feminist authors in general.  -J Ostrow... This is a sizable collection of e-texts of various feminist fairy tales, some of which are quite humourous.  -C Wade... Great selection of humorous and innovative tales.  -S Tassev... This site has an entire collection of fairy stories told through a more feminist perspective.  They are classified by subject and there are quite a few of them.  In my opinion, this is definitely one of the most interesting sites I visited.  -L Grappo...  This is a page of links to various stories written from a feminist perspective, like "When the Princess Rescued the Prince." -L Goldstein; also cited by L Pao...  I like the fact that this site is actually geared toward children, and has many different stories for them to read. -J Kopecky ...This is the best feminist fairy tale site simply for the sheer number of fairy tales represented.  None of the other feminist sites, although some offered more analysis, offered more tales. -B Kinney


Note To Children

I love to get letters! If you feel like writing me, please do.

I'd like to know which stories you like best, and why, and what you'd like in future stories.

(Hope this doesn't sound rude, but my lawyer says I should add this: All ideas sent to me become property of the management, ie Rosemary Lake. If that's ok, please go ahead and write.)

Happy reading!


Note To Educators and Homeschoolers

Please feel free to use these stories in non-digital, casual, small-scale, non-profit ways, just so you include my copyright information and URL and don't change or cut anything. If you want to distribute a lot of copies or reach a big audience or charge money, then  you need my permission by email. Do not repackage as ebooks or redistribute or post elsewhere in digital form, etc.

If you like my stories, I would appreciate some comments for my scrapbook.  I'd especially like feedback from homeschoolers. What else would you like to see on this site, or in future books?

All these stories are suitable for elementary reading level, also called "middle grade" (USA grades around 4-6). The shorter ones may also work for 1-3, the longer ones for 7-9. See below for grade level for each story and help in  choosing stories for special purposes.


Choosing stories for special purposes

Once Upon a Time When the Princess Rescued the Prince
FKGL Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level -- FRE Flesch Reading Ease

FKGL 3.7     FRE 89.0     725 words     The Vampire Grandmother
    Very young heroine does cunning switch on Red Riding Hood

FKGL 4.1     FRE 88.6     2,100 words     The Little Brother Who Cried “Wolf!”
     Older sister copes with wolf and villagers: ingenuity, self-reliance, planning.

FKGL 4.3     FRE 86.2     1,900 words     The Crystal Sphere
    Young confident girl adventurer with magic tools and book of wizardry.

FKGL 4.4     FRE 84.9     2,000 words     The Enchanted Crab
    Very confident princess rescues prince by swimming; some comedy.

FKGL 4.4     FRE 84.9     2,500 words     The Flying Turnips
    Young heroine; escape from abuse by planning and trusting outsiders.

FKGL 4.7     FRE 85.6     3,300 words     The Enchanted Tree
     Romance, friendship, respect. Forest idyll, comic animals.

FKGL 4.8     FRE 83.3     2,400 words     The Bear Princess
    Independence, solitude, romance. “Take this golden hair and stuff it!”

FKGL 4.9     FRE 83.0     1,200 words     Panalou's Little Red Riding Hood
    Small change to the classic: Grandmother snips them both out of stomach.

FKGL 4.9     FRE  82.4     2,200 words     Sir Marzipan
     Confident princess makes, then rescues, her ideal man; planning.

FKGL 4.9     FRE 81.0     3,500  words    The Girl Who Could Not Shudder
     Young confident heroine; comedy. Compassion prevents fear.

FKGL 5.1     FRE 83.7     2,800   words   Queen of the May & the Vampires
     Romance; sword-fighting heroine kills vampires; cool thinking, perseverance.

FKGL 5.8     FRE 77.6     2,200   words   The False Dragonfly Queen
     Animal characters, comedy. Happy result of minding ones own business.

FKGL 6.7     FRE 76.7     3,200   words   Under the Glass Mountain
    Romance, ingenuity, self-reliance. Rejection of shame.   

Once Upon a Time When the Princess Beat the Dragon
FKGL 2.8 FRE 88   24K  The Fisher-Girl and the Magic Flounder   (trusting outsiders, telling truth)
FKGL 4.1 FRE 86   37K The White Bear's Neckband   (trust, persistence, studies)
FKGL 4.3 FRE 84   18K  The Well at the World's End (or Well On the Way to It)  (comedy, speaking out)
FKGL 4.5 FRE 85   12K  The Game-Keeper's Husband   (assertiveness; contrast offensive tales fm Grimm etc)
FKGL 4.7 FRE 85   13K  The Baby from the Eagle's Nest  (loyalty, learning)
FKGL 5.7 FRE 81   11K  The Silent Castle   (kindness to animals)
FKGL 5.5 FRE 81   16K  The Statue Queen's Cave   (foresight)

Once Upon a Time When the Princess Cast the Spell
27K And I Thank You, Too     (female mentor, win-win solutions, amiable disagreement)
23K The Black Toad's Mansion (responsibility, following instructions, escaping exploition)
24K The Prince in the Ivy Tower   (romance, independence)
15K The Bear and the Blindfold   (ingenuity, self-reliance, generosity) - down for revision
19K The Wicker House   (female friends, loving foster family, peace and healing, wisdom of age, comedy)
23K Delian Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (meets and helps prince before she eats the apple)
19K The Witch Princess   (romantic, co-operation)
35K The Princess in Mouse-Wool   (male and female friends, ingenuity, comedy)
34K The Pirates' Prisoner   (female friends, problem solving, kindness)

Once Upon a Time When the Princess Got the Treasure 
30K, FRE 80, FKGL 5.8  "The Never-Summer Mountain"   (initiative, perseverence, following notes)
FRE: Flesch Reading Ease -- FKGL: Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level
(These numbers are approximations, as some checks were run on earlier drafts.)

Other Links

New classic stories online (new to many of us, anyway)

Oz stories

Excerpts from new Oz stories:
Trot of Oz by Glenn Ingersoll and Eric Shanower
The Salt Sorcerer of Oz  by Eric Shanower
More new Oz  links there.

"The Mysterious Door" by Ruth Plumly Thompson -- It's like my modern feminist stories, but was published in 1919.
The Galumpagalooses, a short story by Eloise Jarvis McGraw.
The Land of the Civilized Monkeys by Baum

More rare short Oz stories by Baum, Thompson, Snow
or at http://www.hungrytigerpress.com/tigertales/ 

Very complete listing of Baum's works (Oz and other), Plumly's Oz books, etc. Long page, scroll down.

Links to lots of Oz books online
(Thompson links may not work)

Lyman Frank Baum at the Mad Cybrarian's Library
links to Oz books online, tries to be complete

Several Oz books by Baum, convenient links
The Royal Book of Oz by Ruth Plumly Thompson

Teachers' Resource Page on Baum
good links to all Baum's books?, other stuff

More E. Nesbit works:

The Charmed Life, or the Princess and the Lift Man
Melisande or Long and Short Division
The Railway Children

The Magic World -- stories, one of which has someone getting into a magic world through an old wardrobe

Some Cabinet des Fees stories
     for a longer list, click here and scroll down to 
                    European.French.Cabinet des Fees
   With happy endings

The Golden Branch, Red Fairy Book
Prince Hyacinth and the Dear Little Princess, de Beaumont (a put-on?),  Blue Fairy Book
P:rincess Minon-Minette, Pink Fairy Book, 'Bibliotheque des Fees et des Genies' (I bet George MacDonald read this.)
The White Doe, d'Aulnoy, Orange Fairy Book  
The Frog and the Lion Fairy, d'Aulnoy, Orange Fairy Book
Felicia and the Pot of Pinks, d'Aulnoy, Blue Fairy Book
The White Cat, d'Aulnoy, Blue Fairy Book
Prince Darling, Blue Fairy Book

  With sad endings

The Wonderful Sheep, d'Aulnoy, Blue Fairy Book
The Yellow Dwarf, d'Aulnoy, Blue Fairy Book

Misc reading links

The Internet Public Library, online texts of over 13,000 books

SFF.NET, Estand 
Ezine and ePublisher browsing

Links to many good children's books 

Old Mother West Wind stories
Johnny & Billie Bushytail


Blackmask Online: Home: for girls and boys A wonderful site! Scroll down past the list of authors, and there is a list of links to old old books with a sample paragraph from each.

Bevis by Richard Jeffries
A little like Swallows & Amazons

The Cuckoo Clock -- nice old book, kind of like L.M. Montgomery's

MacDonald's Lilith

Odyssey in simple English - Samuel Butler's translation
My condensed and less sexist version,  Chapter 1

Ruth Plumley Thompson's The Trojan War (ok for homework but dull to read)

Fairy poetry links:
Yeats (straight to the good bits)
And fauns etc

Tarzan books online


Ebook central service: www.knowbetter.com

Fairy Tale and Fairytale Sites

Folklore and Mythology Electronic Texts  D. L. Ashliman / University of Pittsburgh.`Many old stories in by-subject text files: by tale type, etc.
"Name of the Helper" -- Type 500, Rumpelstiltskin and other stories

Red Riding Hood variants -- Type 333, Old French Red Riding Hood version
Another old Red Riding Hood version with werewolf
 Terri Windling on old versions

Andrew Lang's Fairy Books
By Laura Gibbs at http://www.mythfolklore.net/andrewlang/
A wonderful site with ALL Lang's fairy tales, clickable in lots of ways, or search for key words in text
by source of story
by title of story

"Ongoing Tales" -- a collection of old-time fairy tales from various out of copyright books http://www.ongoing-tales.com/SERIALS/oldtime/FAIRYTALES/

Sur La Lune -- surlalunefairytales.com -- some additional complete books added as of  7/4/05

Canadian Wonder Tales -- by Cyrus MacMillan

Czecholovak Fairy Tales -- by Parker Fillmore

East O' the Sun and West O' the Moon -- by Gudrun Thorne-Thomsen

English Fairy Tales -- More English Fairy Tales -- Celtic Fairy Tales -- More Celtic Fairy Tales -- Indian Fairy Tales -- European Folk and Fairy Tales -- by Joseph Jacobs

Facetious Nights of Straparola

Fairy Tales; -- Their Origin and Meaning -- by John Thackray Bunce

Folk Tales from the Russian -- by Verra Xenophontovna Kalamatiano de Blumenthal

Grimm Tales Made Gay -- by Guy Wetmore Carryl

Household Tales -- by Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm

Il Pentamerone -- by Giambattista Basile

Irish Fairy Tales -- by James Stephens

Japanese Fairy Tales -- by Yei Theodora Ozaki

Jataka Tales -- More Jataka Tales -- by Ellen C. Babbitt

Myths and Folklore of Ireland -- by Jeremiah Curtin

Old Hungarian Fairy Tales -- by Baroness Emmuska Orczy

Old Peter's Russian Tales -- by Arthur Ransome

Philippine Folk Tales -- by Mabel Cook Cole

Popular Tales of the Norse -- by Asbjornsen and Moe

Russian Wonder Tales -- by Post Wheeler

The Sleeping Beauty and other Fairy Tales From the Old French -- by Sir Arthur Quiller-Couch

A Study of Fairy Tales -- by Laura F. Kready

Other resources

distinguishes Russian folk 'fairy tale' from legends etc, gives good sources

new links at Similar Pages

Fairy Tales and Fantasy -- some interesting links on analyzing fairy tales

The Feminist Press -- children's books with strong female characters

Many stories with strong girls -- Lilypad Books

Story-lovers.com -- list of  "Strong Women Stories"

Antonia Byatt's article -- about Luthi, etc; -- another, about various commentators

Books on analyzing fairy tales

Introduction to Twice upon a Time: Women Writers and the History of the Fairy Tale by  Elizabeth Wanning Harries

George MacDonald's essay about fairy tales, "The Fantastic Imagination"

Good review of Nesbit at Guardian UK

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