Donna Jo Napoli–East of the Sun

Our guest this week is none other than YA Fantasy author Donna Jo Napoli. Napoli is best known for her stunning retellings of classic stories such as Beauty and the Beast, Rapunzel, and Cinderella. She has set her stories in countries from Persia to Ireland, from Italy to Germany. She is a professor of linguistics, […]

Mechanica: A Steampunk Cinderella Tale

Mechanica, by Betsy Cornwell, is a young adult steampunk retelling of the Cinderella tale. Mechanica, like other modern fairy tale adaptations (Wicked, Maleficent, Frozen) present a strong female character in Nicolette, who is derisively named “Mechanica” by her stepsisters. Like other versions of the Cinderella tale, the mother dies, the father remarries, and then he dies and Nicolette is left in the hands of her stepmother. The “steps” treat her as a servant and abuse her until she is able to escape and live the life she dreamed about through her long years of misery. There are several innovations in this narrative, including the addition of steampunk creations, that make this a vivid and memorable tale.

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