Hi everyone! I have an anthology to highlight today! Do you like fairy tales? What if they're not what you thought they were? Find out below!
Once Upon A Twisted Time
An Anthology of Dark Adult Fairytales
By: Tara Stogner Wood, Trish Marie Dawson, Lindsay Avalon, and Miranda Stork
Publisher: Moon Rose Publishing
Date of Publication: 31st October 2012
Cover Artist: Miranda Stork
Book Trailer: http://youtu.be/6IAdJ6ihdmw
Think you know your fairytales? Think again. These aren’t your normal happily-ever-after. Within these pages, a murderous Little Mermaid gets her revenge, the Cinderella doesn’t really want to wear the slipper, Snow White is up to her eyes in industrial experiments, and the Beauty is in fact the Beast.
This collection of four novellas will surprise you, make you gasp in horror, sigh with relief, and sit on the edge of your seat. And most of all…they will make you rethink everything you think you know about dark fairytales…
Song of the Abyss-Lindsay Avalon
Princess Nerissa had envisioned a perfect wedding to a handsome prince. Instead, she fell into a nightmare. When her new husband tries to murder her just hours after pledging his life to her, she must flee towards the sea. Caught in transition from woman to selkie, she is trapped by the dark waters she hoped would be her salvation. Now her destiny becomes that of luring young men to their death…until one comes along that reignites the spark of love inside her. However to ensure her future, she must first face her past. Revenge must be taken…for both her life, and the life of the young man she now loves.
Miss Cavendish and the Spark of Salvation-Tara Stogner Wood
In a city toiling under the iron fist of the Spiegel Syndicate and its monopoly on coal, Miss Georgina "George" Cavendish is on the brink of a breakthrough that could change the world forever. There's just one thing standing in her way, her aunt - Xenobia Cavendish. Threatened by her efforts, the Syndicate procures the services of a notorious assassin with a past tied to her own, known as The Huntsman, to dispatch the brilliant scientist. But once he gets a glimpse of the headstrong beauty, will he be able to do the job, or will Georgina sway him to The Cause? And will George find the breakthrough she needs in time, or is New London Town doomed to forever lie under the dark shadow of her aunt's factories?
Hawke and the Beast-Trish Marie Dawson
Some curses last forever, and some can be broken with the whisper of three little words. Isabella Rose Woodward fell in love with a witch's son over a century ago. Her punishment for breaking the young man's heart was a beastly one. Every month she turns into a different creature, aging on the full moon when her curse allows for a brief return to her human form. Her only salvation is to find a man that will love her as she is…be it adorned in feathers, fur or scales. Has she found this love with the handsome Jasper Hawke? Or will a mysteriously determined Hunter find her first, and snuff out the life she so desperately seeks? A life of normalcy, where she loves and is loved in return… just as she is.
Reborn City-Miranda Stork
Nyx has one mission in life; bring down the brainwashing of New Omsk’s citizens, and release them from their mundane lives of toil. The year is 2355, and the world is a new place. A Governor is in charge of every city in the world, and humanity is attempting to rebuild itself after recovering from a war that nearly killed it. But this Governor has set his eyes on the intrepid little hacker, Nyx, and he will stop at nothing to get her. But perhaps he needs her more than he ever dreamed he would…as do his citizens.
Question: Why did you pick that specific fairy tale?
It’s an interesting question. But like most of my stories, I don’t think I did-I think it chose me.
My inspiration can come from lots of sources, but my favourite form of inspiration comes from pictures. Yes, that includes pictures of hot guys. *insert childish giggle here* One of my best friends had found a wonderful picture, of a man sat in a throne-like chair, wearing nothing but leather boots and a regal cape. He had a sword in one hand, and looked broodingly at the camera while books were scattered around him. The first thing that came to our minds was a prince. Then for reason, he was Russian. Don’t ask me why, he just had to be Russian. Sexily rolling all those ‘r’s at the roof of his mouth. Yum. Then he wasn’t necessarily a good prince. Not on the surface, anyway.
Because he was a prince, he would of course have to be part of a fairytale. Cinderella came to mind purely by chance. He just looked like a Prince Charming. We chatted about this enough that we thought, “Why not do an anthology of fairytales?” And so the character was born. I went with Cinderella mainly because of the photo. But it was also because he seemed like the anti-Prince Charming. I wondered what else I could make ‘anti’ within the story. What if the Ugly Sisters were actually good? What if the Fairy Godmother granted wishes, but not to Cinderella? What if she had a hidden agenda?
So I chose it because it chose me. I don’t plan what pops into my head, I’m just the filter for it.
Tara Stogner Wood-
I didn’t really choose Snow White. I had inspiration. Inspiration that left me with no choice but to write this story in this fashion.
As it is with most of my work, I am inspired by photos. And one of my co-authors in this anthology, the lovely Trish Marie Dawson, shared with me a particularly inspiring photo. A photo of a man. A sexy one. We’re talking DEAD sexy. UNF. And in this photo, said sexy man is sporting pants so tight I’m sure they’re breaking morality laws in several countries, a pair of knee-high buckled boots that could only be described as Steampunk, and holding of all things…wait for it…a bow! He WAS The Huntsman. I’m ashamed to admit that Snow White was the afterthought.
But there he was, in all his sartorial glory, screaming for me to write about this dark and dangerous man, with his dark and dangerous desires. All I needed to do was add a swishy great coat, à la Benedict Cumberbatch’s BBC Sherlock, hand the man a mechanical bird, and BOOM! Hello, Asher Cole. Once I got started, I never looked back.
Like the rest of my partners in crime, I didn’t strictly adhere to the canon set by the original tale, but rather worked with elements that were familiar and recognizable to readers, shaping them as the story unfolded. So, as you read, I hope that you take away all the little details that are a wink and a nudge to the original work. I also hope that after reading Asher and George’s story, you walk away with that “happily ever after” feeling. After all, isn’t that how all good fairytales end? Happy reading.
I have a confession to make…I always wanted to be a mermaid. I used to pretend I was a mermaid and taught myself how to swim with my legs pressed together. This continued well past the age when I probably should have outgrown this behavior, but what can I say? Given the choice, I’d live in the sea hands down. My mother first put me in a pool when I was only 3 months old and in the ocean when I was just 18 months old. Naturally I had to pick The Little Mermaid.
I didn’t just want to do a mermaid though. I’ve also loved the selkie mythology but hated how they were always sad. I mean, how awesome would it be to shed your skin at will? But who wants to be torn between a life in the sea and the man you love? My mind started racing and thoughts began churning and I knew I had to include a third passion…sirens. Again, who wouldn’t want to have that sort of power over men? Somehow it all ended up working in my head and I think I translated it well onto paper. Personally, I think Nerissa is far more intriguing than Ariel ever was, but I may be a little biased in that respect.
Trish Marie Dawson-
Why did I pick Beauty and the Beast? Well, this particular fairytale has always been one of my favorites. Though I wasn't a young child at the time that the Disney movie came out, I still very much enjoyed it. The bookworm teen, stuck in a place she doesn't feel she belongs, forced to 'conform' to what society sees as appropriate, a father that other's see as embarrassing and the affections of a less than honorable man who wants her to be nothing but barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen. When you think about it, the story line is actually quite brutal. You have this lovely girl who is forced to shack up with this hideous beast, who then of course falls in love with him despite his cursed nature.
This story is a good reminder that people should be allowed to be who they are and accepted by society without judgment. Love has no boundaries, and Beauty and the Beast plays with the idea that love is not something formed by looks, but by the feelings and emotions of what happens underneath the skin. Sure, it’s a love story, but it also hits on some deeper issues that we should all pay attention to. The mob mentality to attack and destroy that which is different strikes a chord in me. Then again, I guess I've always been one to swim against the current, rather than with it simply because it is easier. I love Beauty and the Beast because nothing is easy in the story. And Belle is constantly swimming against the current. The uniqueness of her character makes her one of the more realistic of the Disney characters, in my opinion. She's definitely my favorite heroine.
About the Authors:
Tara Stogner Wood-
Tara Wood divides her time between creating domestic bliss and creating hot paranormal romance with the occasional side of kink. When not playing June Cleaver for her hubby and daughter, she can be found at the local Starbucks slamming back Frappuccinos and plotting out her next idea. Or she’s watching the BBC. Tara resides with her wonderful and tolerant family in the suburbs of Houston, Texas. She is currently at work on several projects, one of them being the next book in her In Blood series.
I was born and mostly raised in San Diego, California where I live now with my family and pets. I’ve been writing short stories and poetry since high school after an obsession with Stephen King’s ‘The Stand’. After over fifteen years of crazy dreams and an overactive imagination, I began my first book ‘I Hope You Find Me’ in December of 2011. When I’m not writing, I am homeschooling my amazing daughter and mildly autistic son, reading whatever I can get my hands on, or enjoying the Southern California sun. As a strict Vegetarian, I hold a special place in my heart for animal rights and dash into the backyard weekly to rescue lizards and mice from our mini-lab/aussie shepherd/cocker spaniel mixed dog, Zoey…who is always getting into some sort of trouble.
I was born in Guisborough, North Yorkshire in 1987 and have lived in various places around Britain, including Newcastle and Glasgow.
My writing is inspired by various writers, including the vivid characters of Charles Dickens, the imagination of Stephen King, and the gothic imagery of Anne Rice.
My love of horror began at an early age, when I was only three or four. I could read proficiently at the age of three, and devoured fairy-stories, but I always had a bent towards the darker stories, such as the Brother's Grimm's tales...Red Riding Hood was always a firm favourite, although I always felt sorry for the wolf, despite him having tried to eat everyone!
I am a wife, a mother to an adorable mini schnauzer, a programmer, and now an author. I love reading romance because no matter what may be happening in my life, I can always count on my books to end happily ever after. My sister drilled into me an appreciation for fantasy and mythology, something I try to bring to my books. After hearing me complain a few too many times that I had “nothing” to read despite the hundreds of paperbacks scattered around the house, my husband began suggesting I write my own stories. When I finally took his advice I discovered that although I enjoy my day job as a software engineer, my true calling is to be an author.