Pandora’s Wonderland: What Makes A Good Retelling (Guest Post + Giveaway)

May 31, 2014 Blogoversary, Giveaway, Pandora's Wonderland 41

Hey everyone! Meredith from Pandora’s Books here. For those who don’t know, I’m doing a joint Blogoversary celebration with Kayla and Stacie from A Wonderland of Reading. The festivities started on May 26 (their one-year Blogoversary) and will end on June 24 (my one-year Blogoversary). We’ll be alternating days and providing fun guest posts from our fellow bloggers and author friends. You can visit A Wonderland of Reading to see the first post and learn more about the details and the grand prize giveaway!

So today, I have the AMAZING Kaitlin from Reading is My Treasure here with an epically awesome guest post. I’ve been friends with Kaitlin for as long as I’ve been blogging! I love chatting with her about bookish things! So, without further adieu, please welcome Kaitlin!


Hi everyone! First of all, I want to say thank you to Meredith for allowing me to write a guest post for her blogoversary celebration! I’ve decided to write about retellings–mainly what I what I like them to have, but I also have some book recommendations for all of you.

What I want to see in a retelling:

  • I want to read something creative. Unique spins on well-known (or lesser known) stories are one of my favorite things about reading retellings.
  • I want to read a retelling that holds the essence of the original story in some way. It’s nice to see some of the same themes and images that made that story memorable. 
  • I want magic. Or just paranormal/futuristic elements. I’m not against contemporary retellings, but generally, I don’t enjoy them as much. They don’t seem to hold the kind of creativity I’m looking for.
  • I want the retelling to stand on its own and not be too much like the original story. If its not different enough, it doesn’t feel . . . completely like the author’s own work. (This is how I felt while reading the last retelling I read. It felt too much like the original story, even though it had a lot of twists.)
  • I want the retelling to be memorable! This applies to all books, but when it comes to retellings, I want to be able to remember how the author twisted the original story and formed their own.

My favorite retellings:
(These books are on Epic Reads’ chart of YA retellings. There are retellings of fairy tales, classics, and mythology.)

Cinder is probably the most creative retelling that I’ve read and really enjoyed. I had that book in mind when I was writing about what I want to see in a retelling. 
Eon is a Asian mythology retelling, and I love it. If you love dragon books, you must read it!
Masque of the Red Death, The Madman’s Daughter, and A Curse as Dark as Gold stand out to me as I look at all the retellings I’ve read. I tend to like a retelling more if it’s set in the past (or the future, but I haven’t read as many of those). 

Retellings that I’m dying to read:

    I’ve only read one retelling or Alice in Wonderland, one of Rapunzel, and none relating to The Wizard of Oz, but I want to read all three so bad! They just seem like something new–and each of the above books seem to have so much creativity put into them.
    I would also love to read books retelling Finnish myths, Robin Hood, King Arthur, and Sherlock Holmes. I also want to read more retellings of Asian mythology, Edgar Allan Poe, and classics.

    That’s all I have for this post! If you have any recommendations for me, please let me know. :)


    Along with Kaitlin’s wonderful post, we have an epic prize to give away! Signed copies of Cinder and Scarlet by Marissa Meyer!! This giveaway is US only, but fear not! We have INT giveaways going on in our Grand Prize Giveaway which you can enter here! We also have an international giveaway going on here!

    So, the rules:

    -Giveaway is US Only

    -Winner has 48 hours to respond. If winner does not respond, a new winner will be selected.

    -You must be 13 or older to enter OR have your parents’ permission.

    -I am not responsible for lost, stolen, or damaged items.

    -I reserve the right to change any rules as I see fit for each individual giveaway

    *The above giveaway rules were borrowed and modified from Jessica @ Just a Book Lover.

    With that being said, I wish you luck! May the odds be ever in your favor!

    a Rafflecopter giveaway

    41 Responses to “Pandora’s Wonderland: What Makes A Good Retelling (Guest Post + Giveaway)”

    1. Heather

      My favorite is definitely Splintered! A. G Howard is amazing!!!! I wasn’t even a huge Alice on Wonderland fan but this book is a 5 star must read!;)

    2. Skylar @ Life of a Random

      I’ve only read Cinder out of the ones you mentioned :3 I really liked it! :)

      I think I’d like to see more re-tellings of less known fairy-tales like you said or maybe more of Sleeping Beauty or the Princes who slept (or didn’t sleep as it turned out) on a pea. :D

        • Meredith

          Oohhh. I’ve seen some that have bits of Sleeping Beauty in it, but an actual Sleeping Beauty retelling would be amazing!

      • Meredith

        Good point! We see a lot of the popular fairy tales done a lot, but seeing some of the lesser-known ones would be fun!

    3. Kaitlin

      We’ve been friends for quite a long time! Man, time has sure flown by, hasn’t it? Thank you for including me on the Rafflecopter. I hope whoever wins loves both books!

    4. Chelsea B.

      I love Beauty by Robin McKinley, because I adore Beauty and the Beast :-)

    5. Angela C.

      My favorite is any Beauty and the Beast or Cinderella retelling (usually, anyway). I really enjoyed The Lunar Chronicles and Splintered. There should be more Rapunzel retellings! :)

    6. Ashley Jellison

      I absolutely love this post. I think the main reason is because I am in the middle of writing my own retelling, which is going well. Total twist of the original, but I like it. Thanks for hosting this giveaway as well as being so amazingly awesome!:)

      • Ashley Jellison

        I would personally love to see a retelling of the Ugly Duckling. Actually, that may be my next project…

    7. Christina (Ensconced in Lit)

      Gosh, that’s hard! Cinder is awesome, and so is Splintered if it counts as a fairy tail. But I want a really awesome retelling of Snow White and Rose Red, which is my favorite fairy tale of all time.

    8. Kayla Adams

      I really loved Tiger Lily which was Peter Pan. I haven’t read to many other retellings. Really want to read the Lunar chronicles though. Plus many more on my wish list.

    9. Miss Wisp

      Scarlet by Marissa Meyer is my favourite retelling, ever.
      I would very much like to see Meyer write a retelling of Beauty and The Beast. I think it would be amazing!

      Thanks so much for this great giveaway!

    10. Holly U

      I LOVE retellings! Some of my favorites include The Lunar Chronicles, Splintered, and Of Beast and Beauty! :)

    11. Natalie

      I’d love to see some sort of retelling of Pride and Prejudice. Sort of like For Darkness Shows the Stars is for Persuasion.

    12. HollyB

      My favorite retellings are DEFINITELY Splintered and Unhinged by A.G. Howard and Cinder by Marissa Meyer (what I wouldn’t give to have a copy, SIGNED by her!!) I think both of these ladies are creative geniuses!

    13. Sarah K.

      My favorite retelling is Ella Enchanted. It’s been one of my favorite books since I was 8.

    Leave a Reply