The pink fairy book

by Andrew Lang

Other authorsH. J. Ford
Book, 1967

Status

Available

Call number

FA

Call number

FA

Publication

New York : Dover Publications, 1967.

Original publication date

1897

Physical description

viii, 360 p.; 22 cm

Local notes

Andrew Lang's Fairy Books—also known as Andrew Lang's "Coloured" Fairy Books or Andrew Lang's Fairy Books of Many Colors—are a series of twelve collections of fairy tales, published between 1889 and 1910. Each volume is distinguished by its own color. In all, 437 tales from a broad range of cultures and countries are presented.

User reviews

LibraryThing member xicanti
A collection of fairy stories and folktales from around the world.

This installment of the coloured fairy books does include stories from Japan, Italy, Africa and Spain, but there's a real emphasis on Scandinavian stories. Several of Hans Christian Anderson's less morbid stories help open the volume, and a large number of the remaining stories hale from Sweden and Denmark, in particular. The tales themselves are a combination of prince and princess stories, (with differing levels of fairy involvement), brother stories and animal fables, with the occasional story about simple folk who make good.

As is usually the case with Lang's collections, the writing is clear and enjoyable, but highly colonial. It's virtually impossible to tell where each of these stories originated based on the writing style. Lang has purged them of all local colour and regional feel. Many of the animal stories are easily identifiable for obvious reasons, (ie, leopards are not native to northern Europe), and sometimes the climate helps determine the location, but in most cases I wouldn't have recognized the source country from the story itself.

If you're looking for careful ethnography, these collections probably aren't the way to go. If you're just interested in entertaining stories, however, or are looking for a bit of a nostalgia trip, they can be a good resource. The illustrations are another high point.
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LibraryThing member MontglaneChess
Another one of Andrew Lang’s colorful collections of fairy stories and folk tales, this time diverting from a mostly European collection to include a heavily animal-based collection of Scandinavian and Japanese stories. Artist H.J. Ford returns with another gorgeous set of plates and illustrations, his princesses unmatched in intricate detail. The stories feature classic tales of princes, princesses, and assorted magical folk and creatures.The collection loses half a star because, as another reviewer noted, “as is usually the case with Lang's collections, the writing is clear and enjoyable, but highly colonial.” The English versions are all completed from previous European translations, making for a supremely unreliable editor who has purged much of the local flavor from some of the tales, making even some of the exotic folk tales seem traditionally European. For those looking for a classic source of obscure or unusual fairy tales not found in Disney’s repertoire, however, Andrew Lang’s extensive collection is a wonderful, if slightly repetitious addition to any school or public library.… (more)
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