Fairy tales are not what they seem. Gisela knows about sacrifice all too well. She abandoned her education, friends, and fairy tales to ...

Guest Post || Rosalyn Briar - My Favorite Fairy Tales

Fairy tales are not what they seem.

Gisela knows about sacrifice all too well.

She abandoned her education, friends, and fairy tales to support her family and care for her sister.

 But when she jilts a wealthy suitor, Gisela is chosen for another type of sacrifice.

 As an Offering to the Goddess Bergot, Gisela and seven others are sent on a deadly quest for a mythical crown. To return home, Gisela must overcome obstacles which darkly resemble the fairy tales she once believed.

Weaving through a tapestry of friendship, romance, violence, and magic—Gisela becomes the target of an ancient evil force, while an ominous detail from the past haunts her at every turn.

To what lengths will Gisela go to save the ones she loves?

 Sometimes sacrifices must be made.

The Grimm’s Fairy Tales have fascinated me ever since I was a child. I not only love
movie adaptations and modern retellings of the stories, but I enjoy the original, and often dark, fairy tales themselves.

When I came up with the idea for The Crown of Bones, I knew I needed to add some of the more popular tales for the readers to easily recognize. Stories like Snow White, Rapunzel, and Hansel and Gretel make large appearances in the story. 

With nods to over twenty Grimm’s Fairy Tales, it was fun to research ideas for The Crown of Bones. I have a lovely (and well-loved) copy of The Grimm’s Fairy Tales that I read front to back multiple times.

Two of my favorite fairy tales actually only make brief appearances in The Crown of Bones, since I wanted to use them for other projects. The first, “The Seven Ravens,” is a wonderful tale about a brave sister who rescues her brothers. I wrote a witchy, colonial retelling of this story called “Mercy + Grace” which is free to read on my website (www.rosalynbriar.com).

My other favorite, “The Three Snake-Leaves,” makes an appearance as the leaves Gisela and Brahm use to heal their wounds. This fairy tale is also the basis for my second novel, A Sea of Pearls & Leaves, and is about an eccentric princess who wishes to avoid marriage. 

While researching and planning for The Crown of Bones, I kept thinking of ways to connect the fairy tales. The idea at the forefront, which led to the development of the story, was to have the evil entity of each tale—whether it’s the wicked stepmother, evil queen, old hag, witch, etc.—all be the very same person. That is how my villain came to be!

I hope readers enjoy this fairy tale story as much as I did writing it!

Rosalyn Briar is the dark fantasy author of The Crown of Bones. She is a former teacher and enjoys reading, writing, and spending time with her family. Follow her on Twitter @rosalynbriar for daily writing questions about characters and world building.