The dark, grim tail . . .
Image from Amazon
. . . of a dragon appears toward the end of this fantasy story because, well - because there's always a dragon!
"But is the dragon defeated?" you wonder. Perhaps. It is partly de-footed, which entails at least partly de-feeted. And thus at least partly defeated, too.
This story by Adam Gidwitz - or, rather, stories - weaves the tale of Hansel and Gretel into a retelling of several other classic fairy tales previously related individually by the Brothers Grimm, the strands of that weaving supplied by a bold narrator - often, by the way, interrupting the tale - who makes The End segue into a "Once upon a time" beginning. Again and again . . . until the final end.
Initially, I disliked the interruptions, but once the story got started, I came to accept this ironically editorializing voice.
And the narrator must not have been judged improper by most readers, for the book found an audience large enough for Adam Gidwitz to follow up with not just a sequel, but with two more volumes, a trilogy! I thus have two more stories of collected stories to read.
If Gidwitz fans like such intertextual stories as these Grimm ones, they ought also to like my story, The Bottomless Bottle of Beer, though maybe when they get a little older . . .