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Mary Mary Quite Contrary - Cameron Jace

(Free book from Kindle store.)

I was really disappointed by this story considering that the majority of the characters, including the title character, are not Grimm related. This is the Grimm Diaries, yet few of the hundreds of Grimm characters actually made it into this story. Like in Beauty Never Dies, Jace pulls from a lot of other sources instead of sticking to the Grimm stores. The main story (based on The Snow Queen) of the splinters of the looking glass is from Hans Christian Andersen and the author even attributes the character of the devil to Andersen instead of the Grimm brothers (even through plenty of their tales features the devil as well). Peter Pan and Dracula are also mentioned as in Beauty Never Dies. And Mary Mary Quiet Contrary/ Bloody Mary and Elizabeth Bathory show up as well, none of which have anything to do with the Grimm tales. Rumplestiltskin did make an appearance.

I did like the connections made between Bloody Mary and Bathory with the Queen of Sorrow, but overall I was let down by the lack of Grimm characters. Jace focuses on the big characters from the fairy tales that always seem to be the focus of these sort retellings (Cinderella, Little Red-Cap, Little Briar-Rose, etc.). Interesting new take on the tales, but they're still the same stories that get the most attention.

Also there were a few contradictions that confused me. In this story the devil mentions that he likes squirrels over people because they can't talk, but in Ladle Rat Rotten Hut, Ladle notes that squirrels can talk. I'm assuming they all live in the same universe but some small details didn't line up.

And in this prequel it is revealed that Peter Pan was in Hell, a fact that Peter himself does not alludes to in Beauty Never Dies as far as I remember. It seems like something one would mention at some point.

Similarly to the other prequels, the connections are cool, but the writing doesn't come up to the same level. The rambling conversation between the devil and Rumplestiltskin was silly and dull.