Two and Twenty Dark Tales
Released: October 16, 2012
You can read the Goodreads summary here.
Two and Twenty Dark Tales is a charity anthology by Month9Books, containing twenty-two short stories by some of your favorite YA authors. Each story is a dark retelling of Mother Goose rhymes.
Anthologies are notoriously difficult for me to review and this one is no different. As expected, there were stories I loved and there were stories that I didn't care about or simply "didn't get." But there were enough stories that held my interest that I ultimately really enjoyed reading this collection. I did find as I read that I tended to enjoy those stories that leaned more to the contemporary side rather than those that took place in the past or were very heavy on fantasy. It's hard for sufficient world building to be included in just a few pages, I think.
While I did recognize some of the Mother Goose rhymes included at the beginning of every story, there were some I wasn't familiar with at all, so it was interesting to read those. I think some of my favorite stories were "Clockwork" by Leah Cypress were a girl can transform herself from human to mouse and back; "Life in a Shoe" by Heidi R. Kling where a woman whose husband is away at war finds a way to have as many children as she can even though she cannot provide for them; "Candlelight" by Suzanne Lazear, which had a definite "HA! Serves you right!" vibe to it. Finally, my absolute favorite story in the collection was "Wee Willie Winkie" by Leigh Fallon. This was one of those Mother Goose rhymes I'd never heard before, by Leigh Fallon wrote such a creepy little story, I read it twice.
Three stars. While every story wasn't necessarily for me, I do believe there's a little something in this anthology for everyone. So if you're a fan of short stories, Two and Twenty Dark Tales is definitely worth picking up, especially since the proceeds go to charity.