{Guest Post/Giveaway} "Who’s the Fairest of Them All?" by Dorian Tsukioka, Author of CURSED BEAUTY and AI OF THE MOUNTAIN

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Stop by The Book Rat later on during FTF for an interview with Dorian Tsukioka and receive an extra entry in the below giveaway to win both books!

Dorian Tsukioka has lived most of life in the heart of America, specifically Kansas City, Missouri. After college, she lived in Japan, in Nagasaki Prefecture. There, she met her her husband and got her crazy last name. (It's pronounced "Ski-OH-kuh" by the way.)

Dorian and her husband lived in Las Vegas, Nevada, Durango, Colorado, and Colorado Springs, Colorado until her first born child came along. Then - much like the lure of the pied piper -  the prospect of free babysitting brought her family back to Kansas City, where you can go to the opera, see a major-league ball game, and go cow tipping all in one night. Dorian does not suggest anyone actually go cow tipping.

Dorian is a full-time elementary school teacher and late-night writer. She loves writing young adult fantasy, paranormal, and science fiction stories. She thinks they rock.

Visit her website, Twitter, and  Pinterest.

"Who’s the Fairest of Them All?"
by Dorian Tsukioka

So, you want to be a fairy tale princess? Or at least, you did once upon a time? I know I did!

Who wouldn’t want to be Snow White, or Cinderella, or Sleeping Beauty?  Think of it…The shoes! The hair! The shoes! The hot, hunky prince! The shoes! The dresses! The shoes! (I may be a little preoccupied with footwear…)

So here’s the question…WHICH fairy tale princess should you be? I’ve done an analysis of the Pros and Cons for three well-known princesses to help you make your decision for which princess you should embody, should the need arise.

1. Cinderella
A dream is a wish your heart makes…until you realize the guy you're dreaming of is a total stalker.

CON: A serious rodent infestation is happening in this residence. Seriously, since she’s the one keeping house, shouldn't she be doing a bit better job? And think of all the mouse droppings. Ewwwww.

Sleeping by the hearth seems like a serious fire hazard. Sure, I get that your bedroom is cold. But cold is better than a raging ball of inferno any day of the week.

Putting up with those two nasty stepsisters and evil stepmother would be so hard! Could I honestly be sweet and demure and take what they dish out without punching one of them in the throat? I think not.

Magic with an expiration date – for the same day! Would you buy a jug of milk that was set to expire at midnight? No? Me either. What good is magic if it’s only going to last a few hours? What kind of screwy magic is that? I’d probably write a strongly-worded message on a comment card about my fairy godmother’s performance if that was the best she could do.

PRO: Living in a house with all females…nope, wait, this should go in the CON section. Imagine the hormones!

At least your real parents loved you! You know, before they died tragically, leaving you all alone. So. Very. Alone.

You have lots of friends! And you share such meaningful conversations…well, soliloquies, at least. Unfortunately, not one of them is capable of talking back to you, because they’re all animals. And if you were seen communicating with them, you’d probably be locked up since people would think you’re crazy.

I’m not feeling so positive about your life right now, Cinderellla. Let’s see if we can’t find something truly positive here…

SHOES! You have the most fantastic shoes!
And then you lose one.
And the other one gets broken.
But still…they were all yours for about 4 hours. That’s something, right?

Oh, here it is! You fall in love with the Prince! Of course!! Yes, THIS is positive!
Because it’s not weird at all that he’s become obsessed with you after one dance and travels all over the country stalking searching for you. No, not creepy at all. Though, may I suggest running a background check on the guy?

2. Snow White
Someday my prince will come…and have issues with necrophilia.

CON: Let’s start with the most obvious here…your stepmom is a witch. Literally! And then she sends a hit man with you to give you some cement shoes so to speak, before she attempt to off you herself with poisoned produce. Where did your dad find this winner? What were his issues? Geeze…

Living in a house with 7 bachelors. Ewwww. My mind can hardly wrap itself around the level of grossness that this would entail. I live with just one man that I can hardly stand sometimes – and I’m married to the guy! Make sure you ALWAYS wear shoes in the bathroom. Just sayin’.

Not only are you living with 7 guys, you’re cleaning their house?! Double ewww. I can’t begin to imagine the amount of mold and grime you’ll encounter, Snow. Start investing in rubber gloves now.

PRO: At least having 7 burly guys around will afford you some sort of protection should that nasty stepmother of yours ever come looking…oh wait. Well, not so much.

The dwarves are great handymen and they make you something spectacularly beautiful. Hold on…the only thing they make you is a COFFIN?  A freaking coffin?  Are you serious? They wait until you’re DEAD to give you something nice? Thank god Prince Charming comes along to save you from these jerks.

Oh Prince Charming! So handsome! So chivalrous! So…obviously a necrophiliac. Did your first kiss really happen when he thought you were dead?? Really? Oh, geeze, that’s beyond gross!!

3. Sleeping Beauty  
I walked with you once upon a dream…and then you killed a person just to kiss me while I was sleeping.

CON: Getting told that you’re actually royalty instead of a mere peasant, that no, you can’t shack up with the stranger you just met in the woods, and then sent to live with parents who essentially kicked you out and into a fairy-run boarding school for the past 16 years would be hard enough, but then to get there and be killed, or at least forced into a curse-induced sleep until some guy shows up to kiss you would be fairly humiliating.

Bird poop. Just about every time a bird flies, it takes a crap. Now imagine dancing around with a bunch of them in the forest. Aurora, I think there’s something in your hair…

Utter starvation and malnutrition for 16 years. Did you see those fairies try to make a cake without using magic? How the heck did they feed Aurora all those years? And just where did they get formula when she was an infant? Did they hire a nursemaid? Seriously, I have questions here!

PRO: Both of your parents love you dearly. And they’re still together! Bonus! Neither of them are deceased and/or remarried – double bonus!! How wonderful that you are able to be together, even though you have absolutely no memories of them, nor do you really have any sort of bond or connection to help you build your relationship. Still, it’s nice to have a mom and dad.

You get to be raised by three fairies! How much fun is that? Sure, they’re completely incompetent without their magic, but still, it sounds fun in theory.

You get to live in a secluded, wooden retreat. No worries about the hustle and bustle of castle life. Sure, you’d be pampered, having all your heart’s desires delivered to you daily, but still, it’s nice to be out in the middle of nowhere…where you have no friends, no neighbors, no one to talk to other than the animals. (What is it with fairy princesses and their weird obsession with talking with animals?)

Your prince saves you! No matter that he’s a peeping tom, seeing you parade around the forest while he watches voyeuristically behind a bush. No matter that he uses the secret conversation you were having with the owl and the birds and the squirrels to make you trust him. No matter that he instantly falls in love with you and insists on meeting you again that very night. And no matter that he kills someone just to get to you, or makes a move on you when you’re sleeping. Never mind all that. He’s a keeper!

So…which fairy princess would you want to be? 
After that brief analysis, I’m not so sure anymore. 

I could go on and on. 
Belle = Stockholm syndrome. 
Ariel = tongue cut out (in the original version) and an unfaithful boyfriend in the movie. 
Tiana = falls in love with a slacker to turned her into a frog. 
Rapunzel = daily migraines from all that hair.

My takeaway is that life always seems greener on the other side of the very large, stone and mortar privacy fence. Maybe being a fairy tale princess isn’t all it’s cracked up to be, and I should be satisfied with just being me.

But, oh, think of the shoes! 
O F F I C I A   I N F O:

Author: Dorian Tsukioka
Release Date: November 15, 2014
Publisher: Dorian Tsukioka

A pair of glass slippers that can change her life? When something is too good to be true, it usually is...

Adelaide has lived her entire life cursed with a birthmark that makes people shy away. When an invitation to the Elder Prince’s ball falls in her lap, she knows attending would only cause people to shun her more.

A fairy godmother feels her pain and offers her a pair of glass slippers that not only transform her ragged dress to an elegant gown, but also removes the mark that covers her face. However, Adelaide soon learns that the beautiful slippers can steal away more than just her birthmark, leaving her cursed in a far worse way.

This retelling of the classic Cinderella story will resound with readers of young adult fiction who love paranormal fantasy, fairy tales, and a splash of romance.

Author: Dorian Tsukioka
Release Date: December 31, 2014
Publisher: Dorian Tsukioka

Ai must choose between her future, her family, the man she loves, and the power-hungry lord who will stop at nothing to possess her. -- Does she have a choice, or is she powerless to save herself and those she loves?

Eighteen-year old Ai has lived a quiet life in the mountains of southern Japan, until the feudal ruler of her region, Lord Nakaguchi, decides to build his opulent, new castle at the top of her mountain. Once Lord Nakaguchi meets Ai, he knows he must have her as his own - whether she likes it, or not.

Ai has no intention of succumbing to Lord Nakaguchi’s advances. She is already deeply in love with Kaito, a samurai warrior she has known all her life who loves her in return. But, their love is an ill-fated impossibility, made even more difficult by Lord Nakaguchi’s persistent demands.

AI OF THE MOUNTAIN is a fairy retelling of the classic story, Beauty and the Beast, set in feudal Japan, and will resound with readers of young adult fiction who love paranormal fantasy, fairy tales, and a splash of romance!


Enter to win...

An e-book copy of both CURSED BEAUTY and AI OF THE MOUNTAIN by Dorian Tsukioka!

(Giveaway is INTERNATIONAL!)

This giveaway ends April 22nd at midnight, EST.

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