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Top Ten Books I’d Give To Readers Who Have Never Read YA Retellings

I LOVE talking about young adult retellings because there’s nothing like seeing your favorite fairytale or myth reimagined by a skilled author. Below are my all-time favorites.

Topic provided by The Broke and The Bookish.

Top Ten Books I’d Give To Readers Who Have Never Read YA Retellings

top ten books i'd give to readers who have never read young adult retellings fantasy

1. For Darkness Shows the Stars– by Diana Peterfreund. This is a Persuasion retelling, and it is delightfully intense and lovely. I loved the science fiction spin on the story and the romantic tension was still in tact.

2. Cruel Beauty– by Rosamund Hodge. This was a super interesting read – it was a mix of a Beauty and the Beast retelling along with some Greek myth. It was just excellent overall and one of my all-time favorite retellings.

3. Daughter of the Forest– by Juliet Marillier. Known for remaking Celtic lore, Marillier reimagines The Children of Lir myth. I loved this author’s work and highly recommend all her series.

4. Across a Star-Swept Sea– by Diana Peterfreund. This is a sequel to For Darkness Shows the Stars, but can be read as a standalone (things only overlap at the very end). It’s a retelling of The Scarlet Pimpernel. Only the one in disguise this time is a girl. Loved it!!

5. Cinder, Scarlet & Cress– by Marissa Meyer. YOU GUYS. I hope all my gushing about this series has affected you over the years. This series takes classic fairy tales – Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood, Rapunzel and next year Snow White – and gives them science fiction and drama and romance like you’ve never seen. Ah-mazing.

6. The Madman’s Daughter & Her Dark Curiosity – by Megan Shepherd. This is another series that retells stories in a sequential but unique way. The first book is a new version of The Island of Dr. Moreau, the second Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and the third (A Cold Legacy) Frankenstein. Incredibly good and oh-so satisfying.

7. Entwined – by Heather Dixon. I adored Dixon’s take on The Twelve Dancing Princesses. It was lovely and suspenseful, and I adored the additional details and fun.

8. Brazen– by Katherine Longshore. Instead of fairytale retellings, Longshore retells actual history from a more YA-friendly perspective. Although this is historical fiction, I think it still counts as a retelling. Brazen looks at the life of Mary Howard, friend to Anne Boleyn, and wife to Fitz, the next potential heir to Henry VIII’s throne. THE DRAMA. THE INTRIGUE!

9. The Goose Girl– by Shannon Hale. Absolutely one of the best retellings ever. Hale is a masterful writer, and it really shows in this story of a princess who loses her way and yet finds herself.

10. Winterspell– by Claire Legrand. I read this a few weeks ago and haven’t reviewed it yet because it releases next month. But, this book incorporates the story of The Nutcracker. It takes it in a whole new direction, and I loved all the dark fantasy involved. Mark this on your TBR for sure!

Bonus: I just received Of Metal and Wishes in the mail today! I’m pretty excited to check it out, as it’s a “lose retelling of The Phantom of the Opera.”

What YA retellings have you read and loved?

About Lisa Parkin

I'm a hardcore lover of young adult fiction and have been reviewing books since 2011. Other interests include Downton Abbey, heat lightning storms, Harry Potter land and (begrudingly) one orange tabby.
  • Beth

    Juliet Marillier’s “Wildwood Dancing”, which is a retelling of 12 Dancing Princesses and many more myths, and is awesome.
    I also loved Sarah Cross’ “Kill me Softly”, but that’s less a retelling and more a modernization of all classic Grimm fairytales.
    And I’m currently on Shannon Hale’s “Book of a Thousand Days”, which seems to be a retelling of something…

  • This is such a fun post! I love the Lunar Chronicles series so much; it seems like everyone does, though! I’ve never heard of the others, though.