The Land of Stories (Book #2): The Enchantress Returns

by Chris Colfer

Hardcover, 2013



Local notes

Fic Col




Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (2013), Edition: First Edition, 517 pages. (March 2018) $19.99.


Against the will of their grandmother, twins Alex and Conner must find their own way into the Land of Stories to rescue their mother and save the fairy tale world from the greatest threat it has ever faced--the return of the Enchantress who cursed Sleeping Beauty.


Original language


Original publication date


Physical description

517 p.; 5.75 inches

Media reviews

Once Upon a Time meets Magic Treehouse in one of my favorite re-imagined fairytale series. I love the way Colfer kind of turned these classic stories on their heads and how two stories you would never think to connect are intertwined. It's truly creative without losing the original stories
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integrity. For example, Rumpelstilskin is the youngest brother to the 7 dwarves. Jack from the beanstalk is dating Goldilocks. Red Riding Hood is a queen and the Evil Queen wasn't as evil as once thought. Esmia the Enchantress is an ex-fairy who had been on the fairy council and was the Fairy Godmothers heir. Sleeping Beauty's grandmother is the first Queen Beauty. Her husband was cursed as the Beast by the Enchantress Esmia because he didn't love her. Queen Beauty broke the curse by loving the Beast. After that failure, the Enchantress cursed the Beauty family with spinning wheels because the grandma Beauty was a spinner of silver before she met the Beast. Esmia is back and she has resumed her hobby of collecting souls and planning to conquer the fairytale world and the real world as well. In order to do this she has to master the 7 deadly sins and conquer the fairytale worlds past, present, and future to create a portal to the real world. The unlikeliest crew of characters, Queen Red Riding Hood, Froggy (Prince Charlie), Goldilock's, Jack (from the beanstalk), Alex, and Conner, get together and work to gather the items needed to beat the Enchantress before she takes over all of the fairytale world and becomes unstoppable. Between Queen Red Riding Hood and Goldilocks's catty exchanges and Conner's snarky observations and interpretation of the stories, I laughed out loud a lot while listening to this audiobook. There's a great lesson about compassion and forgiveness and that great power comes in small packages. What kings and queens could not defeat, a single kind girl succeeded. The only thing I don't care for is the language. I don't see how cuss words further a fairytale much less why they'd be in a book kids read. I'm an adult so it won't keep me from reading this series. The adventure and story is so good it outweighs a couple cuss words for an adult reader, but it may be a deal breaker for some parents. Happy reading! 📚
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User reviews

LibraryThing member karenvg3
Another commute book done. When I heard Colfer was the voice on the audio version I had to listen. He is one of my favorites. I enjoyed the story as well lol. 4🌟
LibraryThing member Draak
This is the second book following The Wishing Spell. In this one Alex and Connor Bailey have to find a way back to the Land of Stories to rescue their mother who was taken by the evil Enchantress. I am sold on these books, they are so much fun to read. Back are the characters that were in the first
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book and there are some new ones. I recommend these books and cannot wait for the next installment.
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LibraryThing member lindamamak
Great sequel to "The Wishing Spell" If you enjoyed the first book, hold on this one is just as awesome.
LibraryThing member ladypembroke
I really like these characters, but these books are hard for me to judge since they are aimed at a younger market. The writing is definitely not an adult level, and Colfer is still finding his voice it seems. However, I liked a few of the twists and turns. I don't think this book needed to be 500
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pages, but the pace is quick so you don't really notice.

I'm pretty pleased that I saw the ending coming. ;-)
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LibraryThing member jwarbler
Nothing makes me want to cry like the end of this book makes me want to cry. I'll be over here having an emotional breakdown if you need me.
LibraryThing member Breton07
Chris Colfer's second novel I found to be as riveting as the first. He combines the hilarious fun of imaginative retelling of fairytales, and the moral dilemmas to be solved by a brother and sister together.
LibraryThing member WhitneyYPL
Land of Stories, Book 2: The Enchantress Returns
The second book in the Land of Stories series is sadly far less enjoyable than its predecessor.
The storyline: The Evil Enchantress who cursed Sleeping Beauty is back with a vengeance. A fun premise that really goes nowhere. This book is heavily
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flawed. First, and most simply a lot of the humor tends to fall flat. However, my biggest issue was the pacing of the book. The main quest line doesn’t begin until half way through the book. I spent the first 250 pages waiting for the “book to start.” Despite this, the first part of the book is still well-written and entertaining but it is just far too long. To add to that, when the main quest line begins, it moves a little too fast. The characters are able to defeat major villains quickly and without much difficulty. What should have been the most exciting part of the book is rushed though. The ending is emotional but also drawn out for too long.

I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoyed the first and despite this review I will still read the third book in the series. However, if the issues with the next book are the same then I’m out. –RR
AR: 5.3, 19 pts.
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LibraryThing member lissabeth21
Love, Love, Love - so clever the way this story weaves together all the classic and favorite tales in a fresh and exciting new way. I adore the Bailey's and their adventures. I can't wait to go pick up the third installment. And I am looking forward to sharing these with my boys someday.
LibraryThing member benuathanasia
So...another fetch quest book with no real struggle to accomplish their tasks? Weak. Real weak.
LibraryThing member bragan
This is book two in the Land of Stories series of kids' novels. I had mixed feelings about the first volume in the beginning, but found that eventually it won me over. This one, I'm pleased to report, I enjoyed all the way through. It doesn't exactly have that memorable, instant-classic quality I'm
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always secretly hoping for when I open up a book aimed at kids, but it's fun. I particularly enjoy Colfer's versions of classic fairy tale characters. They're flawed, quirky, and always entertaining. Especially the earthy, hard-drinking Mother Goose, who I just wish had been in more of the story and who I'm hoping to see again in future installments.

I do hope we're done with collect-the-items quest plots for the rest of the series, though. I know it's a venerable fantasy trope, but two of them in as many books seems like about enough of that for a while.
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LibraryThing member Sheila1957
So the Enchantress who cursed Sleeping Beauty is back for revenge. She will stop at nothing to get all the kingdoms in Fairy Tale land to bow to her and give her their thrones. Little is she expecting the twins to show up or Alex to stand up to her.

Wow, what a lot of action and adventure in this
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rollicking tale. Fairy Godmother is trying to keep Alex and Connor safe but they are determined to get back to the Land of Stories by any method possible even if it means tricking Mother Goose. They manage to get back and start the quest to stop the Enchantress. They meet up again with old friends who help them on their quest. Even the trolls and goblins are not what they expect. Unexpected twists happen throughout their quest and this story. I could not put it down. I loved reacquainting myself the with characters and meeting some new ones. Some give a little towards the quest and some give all. Well worth reading!
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LibraryThing member Cecrow
The second book of the series raises stakes through the roof as Colfer brings the Enchantress into play. This is the evil fairy of Sleeping Beauty fame, who cursed her with a spinning wheel, a hundred year sleep and a forest of thorns. As it turns out (in this telling), she was also responsible for
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another curse, the one that made the Beast into a Beast if you know who I mean. The Enchantress humbles not just the other fairies who oppose her, but the entire set of kingdoms, and she does it effortlessly. It's clear that the entire Land of Stories is about to fall under her sway, and she hints that Earth is next. It's up to Alex and Conner to dream up a solution

Certainly it makes sense to aim for a bigger story in the second novel of a series, but this? Putting everything and everybody on the line, in both worlds? It felt a little over the top, and I can't imagine what's left for the third book, let alone the rest of the series. I'm also not impressed with the paint-by-numbers collect-the-things quest that exactly parallels the first book's adventure. Doesn't matter, my kids loved it anyway.

I was surprised when Lucy Pevensie made a cameo. Unlike the other stories Colfer borrows from, I'm certain Narnia is still protected by copyright in the United States.
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LibraryThing member Kiri
I read both in this series all at once (having had them lent to me the same week). I was pleasantly surprised by both story lines and the complexity of the plot and themes presented. Mr. Colfer takes the time to expand and address topics that young adults, and adult, grapple with in everyday life.
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I also felt that the exploration of the "other side of the story" in terms of character motivation for the villains (and the resulting lesson) to be expertly handled.

If Mr. Colfer continues to write young adult (or any genre) novel with such passion and skill I expect him to have a very long professional writing career.. and I look forward to his future work.
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