Happy Birthday, Hans Christian Andersen!

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Happy Birthday, Hans Christian Andersen!

©Thora Hallager, 1869
Hans Christian Andersen may have been born 213 years ago, but even now, more than a century after his death, he hasn't been forgotten.  His stories are some of the most beloved even now.

True, for most people not in the "fairy tale know," all fairy tales have the same genesis.  Much of what Hans Christian Andersen has written gets lumped in as a Grimm story or it's attributed as a Disney original.

Especially The Little Mermaid.  I am continually amazed at the number of people I come across who don't know the real story of The Little Mermaid and think it's the version portrayed by Disney...or that Disney invented it.  Or both...
The tale is much more tragic than you might realize, and this version isn't often portrayed even in novel retellings.  The closest retelling I've seen that comes close is MERMAID by Carolyn Turgeon (Who has a video post today where she reads from a couple of her novels).

Did you know that it was Andersen, not the Brothers Grimm, who wrote The Princess and the Pea, The Emeperor's New Suit, The Snow QueenThe Red Shoes, and The Ugly Duckling? What about the fact that he was one of the first to bring The Sandman into existence?

Which are your favorite Hans Christian Andersen fairy tales?

Mine are The Little Mermaid, The Little Match Girl, Thumbelina, The Snow Queen, and The Steadfast Tin Soldier.

Whenever I find a retelling on one of these, I get really excited!  For example, this is one reason that Jackson Pearce's fall release of COLD SPELL has me so excited (And why FATHOMLESS did the same thing last year), as well as why I'm no longer sure whether I'm excited about Disney's November movie Frozen or fearful that it's moving too far away from its roots now that it's been retooled...


  1. What is Frozen a retelling of? And Coldspell? I'm not up on Jackson Pearce's novels lately. And I haven't seen a thing about the Disney movie.



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