Fairy tales are as old as language itself.

In the beginning, such tales of wonder were told by a storyteller to an audience, in the darkness of a long winter to while away the hours, in a marketplace to amuse and beguile the passerbys, to young men and women about to set forth on their life’s journey, to teach and warn and to give them the tools they needed to survive.

The motifs and metaphors of these stories created a universal language that all humans share. For each culture has its own myths, folklore and fairy tales, and many of them are strikingly similar despite the vast distances that separate those that told the tale.

In this series of long forgotten fairy-tales, author Kate Forsyth and illustrator Lorena Carrington work together to bring tales of wisdom, compassion and courage to life for the modern-day reader.

These enchantingly beautiful books will transform the way you think about fairy tales.

1. Vasilisa the Wise & Other Tales of Brave Young Women

Vasilisa The WIse by Kate Forsyth

For many young women, the only fairy-tales they know are the ones that have been retold by Walt Disney Studios.

Once upon a time, these stories of magical transformation were meant for young women as they grew away from childhood and towards adulthood. They were told by their mothers and grandmothers and the wise women of the clan as they spun and wove and stirred their pots and made their potions. The heroines of these old tales set out on a difficult road of trials to discover their true destiny. And, contrary to popular opinion, marrying a prince was not the only goal. These ancient tales of wonder and adventure are about learning to be strong, brave, kind and true-hearted, and trusting in yourself to change the world for the better.

Meet the brave young women from tales of yore …

Vasilisa who must try to outwit the fearsome witch Baba-Yaga. 

Katie Crackernuts who sets out to save her sister from dark magic. 

Flora, the gardener’s daughter, who marries a giant serpent to save a prince. 

Fairer-Than-A-Fairy, a princess who is kidnapped by an evil one-eyed enchantress. 

Lullala, in love with a prince cursed to be a lion by day and a man by night. 

Rosemary, a Scottish lass whose baby is stolen by the wicked faery folk of the Sidhe. 

Ursula, a princess replaced by a walking, talking automaton.

These are not your usual passive princesses, waiting forlornly for their prince to come …

2. The Buried Moon & Other Tales of Bright Young Women

The Buried Moon by Kate Forsyth

All of the seven tales in this collection have one thing in common. They are stories of young women who face darkness and danger, but who prevail against the odds because of the brightness of their spirit and the strength of their resolve.

The Moon is saved from the bog by the courage of those who love her bright light …

Fenella stays silent for seven years and weaves cloth from nettles to save her brothers …

Nastia must learn to survive alone in the land of the midnight sun …

Jiayang, daughter of the Emperor of China, devises an impossible quest for her unwanted suitors …

Jennet holds fast to her beloved, despite the cruel enchantments the Faery Queen casts upon him …

Sofiya outwits the Tsar and so wins his love and respect …

Molly Whuppie outwits a giant and saves her sisters …

These stories of bright young women will remind readers of their own inner radiance, which gives them power to illuminate the whole world.

3. Snow White, Rose Red & Other Tales of Kind Young Women

Snow White Rose Red by Kate Forsyth

An enchanting collection of little-known fairy tales about young women who prevail because of their kindness and compassion 

Snow-White & Rose Red save an enchanted bear from an ungrateful goblin

Marushka is sent to find strawberries in the snow by her cruel step-sister but wins the help of the Twelve Months

Ailsa climbs Mischanter Mountain to rescue her sister, armed with nothing more than her sewing kit and her parents’ blessing

Reinhilda outwits a witch and saves her sweetheart

A kind henwife helps Morag find a home for her family with the help of a magic pot

Agnes and a young Romany woman together overcome the curse of an enchanted cup

Brigid honours a promise she made, even though it takes her to the underworld and back

With an introduction by Isobelle Carmody, Snow White, Rose Red & Other Tales of Kind Young Women contains tales from Germany, Slovenia, Ireland and the Scottish Travellers.

RETOLD BY KATE FORSYTH

ILLUSTRATIONS BY LORENA CARRINGTON

SERENITY PRESS PUBLICATIONS