Reviewed by: Michael Thal
Genre: Fairy Tales (Alternative)
Approximate word count: 13-14,000 words
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Michael Mullin founded Gemiknight Studios. Its subsidiary, Gemiknight Press published TaleSpins. In a previous life Mullin taught preschool and college, two positions he found disconcertingly similar. Michael’s greatest love is his pre-teen twins and his lovely wife. The Mullin family lives in Pasadena, California.
TaleSpins, written entirely in rhyme, retells the stories of well-known fairy tales with a new spin. In The Previously Untold Story of the Previously Unknown 8th Dwarf we uncover the true reason Snow White was able to survive the plot against her by the wicked stepmother. Then there’s Princess Penny in The Plight and Plot of Princess Penny. Penny is a not quite normal 15 year-old seeking revenge against classmate Darcy for her constant bullying ways. To get the best results Penny naturally turns to the local witch. Finally, in Jack’d, a modern day Jack and the Beanstalk tale, Jack is an impoverished teen tagger and thief who climbs a tall building to find wealth.
Michael Mullin has a unique way of telling his stories. For example, in Jack’d we meet the doctor who says,
If you must know I’ll tell you that I am a doctor.
Little else will be revealed.
I’m too modest to say, but others
Have called me a giant in my field.
As readers are drawn into a retelling of Snow White and the Seven Dwarves, a what happened after story to the wicked witch’s cottage in Hansel and Gretel, and a new spin on Jack and the Beanstalk they are charmed by the turn of phrase and fresh stories that are produced by Mulllin’s poetry.
Yes, at spots the rhyme feels forced, but for the most part, the author does a superb job. Bravo!
No significant errors.
Rating: **** Four stars