Beauty and the Beast

Beauty and the Beast : Classic Tales About Animal Brides and Grooms from Around the World

3.89 (137 ratings by Goodreads)
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Perhaps no fairy tale is as widely known as 'Beauty and the Beast' - and perhaps no fairy tale exists in as many variations. Nearly every culture tells the story in one fashion or another - such cultural phenomena as The Fault in Our Stars and Me Before You are recent examples - and it is impossible to find one version that laid the foundation for the rest. From Cupid and Psyche, India's Snake Bride to South Africa's 'Story of Five Heads', the partnering of beast and beauties has beguiled us for thousands of years.

In this fascinating volume preeminent fairy tale scholar Maria Tatar brings together tales from ancient times to the present and from a wide variety of cultures.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 304 pages
  • 138 x 199 x 17mm | 186g
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • Annotated
  • 0143111698
  • 9780143111696
  • 514,244

Review quote

[This] new book from Penguin ... provides some historical context [to the Disney film] ... Most of the stories about young women and animal grooms follow a predictable pattern ... But the Penguin book also includes plenty of stories in which the genders are flipped, pairing young men with animal brides. * The New Yorker * The tales in Tatar's compilation swing from vicious to romantic, from comedy to horror ... Tatar's book alone contains stories from almost two dozen countries. * * A rich, intriguing volume highly recommended for fairy-tale fans. * Booklist * Maria Tatar's new collection for Penguin Classics ... ventur[es] deeper into the rich universe of animal bridegroom stories ... There is also the parallel tradition of animal bride stories-swan maidens and selkies with a much sharper edge than The Little Mermaid ... The source material here is much richer in possibilities than turning Belle into a crusader for women's literacy. * Jezebel * Maria Tatar rounded up stories about animal brides and grooms from around the world in this new Penguin Classics collection, and while I am a certified fairy tale nerd, there was plenty in this book that was new to me. -- Constance Grady * Vox * Superb ... Each story is basically an expression of anxiety about marriage and relationships-about the animalistic nature of sex, and the fundamental strangeness of men and women to each other ... Tatar points out, too, that every generation of monsters speaks to the anxieties of its time. * The Atlantic *
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About Maria Tatar

Maria Tatar chairs the program in folklore and mythology at Harvard. She is the author of many acclaimed books on folklore and fairy tales, as well as the editor and translator of The Turnip Princess, The Annotated Hans Christian Andersen, The Annotated Brothers Grimm, The Classic Fairy Tales: A Norton Critical Edition and The Grimm Reader. She lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
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Rating details

137 ratings
3.89 out of 5 stars
5 28% (38)
4 42% (57)
3 24% (33)
2 6% (8)
1 1% (1)
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