Who hasn’t heard the tale of Sleeping Beauty? A young woman accidentally pricked her finger on a spinning wheel’s spindle and went into a death-like coma. All at once, it’s intriguing, sinister, and horrifying. If you delve far enough, you will discover a dark and pernicious narrative; but, if you simply scratch the surface, you will discover the account of a woman who was put to sleep by a disgruntled fairy. Whatever attracted your interest in this story and the retellings of it, it is undeniable that it did. Here are Top 6 Retellings of Sleeping Beauty that you should read.

spindle’s end

Top 6 Retellings of Sleeping Beauty - spindle’s end
Top 6 Retellings of Sleeping Beauty – spindle’s end

Spindle’s End, a retelling by Robin McKinley, tells the story of Rosie, a young girl who was saved on her name day from a bad fairy. She was nevertheless cursed to prickle her finger on a spindle and enter an endless coma. This story is told much like a fairy tale, with the narrative bearing considerably more weight than the actual language. In addition, McKinley devotes a lot of work to create the world in which her characters live. If you’re looking for a slow-burn retelling, I highly recommend this book!

The infant was exceptional in the eyes of all the animals in the forest, field, and riverside. On her naming day, the bad fairy Pernicia captured the princess and spirited her away. Rosie was doomed to prick her finger on a spinning wheel’s spindle and slip into a poisoned sleep from which no one would be able to wake her. However, the curse had already been cast.

The retellings of fairytales by Robin McKinley are incredibly simple to read and faithful to the original stories. The only issue with Robin McKinley’s work is that, occasionally, it reads almost exactly like the original story.

The gates of sleep

The gates of sleep
Top 6 Retellings of Sleeping Beauty – The gates of sleep

The Elemental Masters series by Mercedes Lackey includes several retellings, including The Gates of Sleep. The protagonist of this tale is Marina, a Victorian English bohemian artist couple’s child. Marina develops into a well-educated young woman, although much of her knowledge comes from the fact that she is an elemental master like her parents. She asks her parents several questions, all of which are unanswered. She finally realizes how much danger she is in when she meets her aunt Arachne. Check out this fascinating tale of Sleeping Beauty retelling right away!

A long, long sleep

Top 6 Retellings of Sleeping Beauty - A long, long sleep
Top 6 Retellings of Sleeping Beauty – A long, long sleep

Rosalinda Fitzroy is awakened by a kiss after having slept for 62 years. Rose, at sixteen, slept through the Dark Times, which claimed the lives of millions and completely altered the world she knew, while confined in the chemically induced stasis of a tube in a forgotten basement.

Rose, who was welcomed upon her awakening as the long-lost heir to an interplanetary empire, is now pushed alone into a future where she is either seen as an oddity or a menace because her parents and her first love have long since passed away. She is drawn to the boy who kissed her awake because she wants to start over and is desperate to put the past behind her and adjust to her new environment.

But when a lethal threat threatens Rose’s precarious new existence, she must face the demons of her past head-on or risk having no future at all.

In what appears to be a dystopian/science-fiction version of Sleeping Beauty, Rosalinda awakens in a world that is distinct from the one she was familiar with. It received a lot of mixed reviews, but I did enjoy reading them because Twilight was the YA phenomenon at the time this book was published, and many reviewers have compared it to that (which seems a bit odd given how dissimilar the two books are).

The Fairy’s return and other fairy tales

The Fairy’s return and other fairy tales
Top 6 Retellings of Sleeping Beauty – The Fairy’s return and other fairy tales

Nobody should be shocked that Gail Carson Levine made such a list. Princess Sonora and the Long Sleep is one of the many fairy tale retellings included in The Fairy’s Return and Other Fairy Tales. In addition to the sleeping princess, this tale also involves a herd of sheep that just so happens to be balding.

Princess of thorns

Top 6 Retellings of Sleeping Beauty - Princess of thorns
Top 6 Retellings of Sleeping Beauty – Princess of thorns

With her unique rendition of Princess of Thorns, Stacey Jay introduces us to a tale likened to Game of Thrones. Aurora, a fairy who seems human, is the character we follow. Any man who kisses her has the potential to be destroyed. She poses as a male to blend in, but in doing so, Aurora finds herself collaborating with a cursed prince to defeat a wicked ogre queen. Aurora can save her brother and reclaim the throne that was stolen from her if they can topple this queen. Will the prince and the curses that afflict them both be able to be broken by Aurora? Read on to learn more!

Once Again

Once Again
Top 6 Retellings of Sleeping Beauty – Once Again

Princess Aurore was born with a curse that will cause her to prick her finger at age sixteen and slumber for a hundred years. The intrepid princess develops a habit of venturing outside the boundaries of the castle, where her kindness and compassion win the respect of the locals.

Aurore, however, sets out on a perilous adventure to put a halt to the wicked magic when she learns that the approaching curse will hurt not only her but the entire realm. Before it’s too late, will she be able to break the curse?

This one is a little complicated because, as far as I can gather, “Beauty Sleep” was first released as a standalone book, but it has subsequently been combined with Liz Braswell’s version of Snow White in a collection titled Once Again.

This one seems to be more of a high fantasy retelling in which Aurore is aware that she will be cursed and sets out to avoid being harmed by the curse.

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