By Desiree HoltA fairy tale, or wonder tale, is a kind of folktale or fable. In these stories you will find witches and queens, giants and elves, princes, dragons, talking animals, ogres, princesses. Strangely enough you won't see many fairies! Marvelous and magical things happen to the characters in fairy tales. A boy can become a bird. A princess may sleep for a hundred years. A seal may become a girl. Objects too can be enchanted — mirrors talk, pumpkins become carriages, and a lamp may be home to a genie.
Fairy tales have been with us for a very long time and nearly everyone can remember being tucked-up in bed listening to Jack and the Giant Killer, Cinderella or one of the countless others. So where did fairy tales originate from, who wrote them and when? Have the stories remained constant through time and have they all had happy endings?
A fairy tale is a type of short story that typically features European folkloric fantasy characters, such as fairies, goblins, elves, trolls, dwarves, giants, mermaids, or gnomes, and usually magic or enchantments. Fairy tales may be distinguished from other folk narratives such as legends (which generally involve belief in the veracity of the events described) and explicitly moral tales, including beast fables.
In less technical contexts, the term is also used to describe something blessed with unusual happiness, as in "fairy tale ending" (a happy ending) or "fairy tale romance" (though not all fairy tales end happily). Colloquially, a "fairy tale" or "fairy story" can also mean any farfetched story or tall tale; it's used especially of any story that not only isn't true, but couldn't possibly be true.
In cultures where demons and witches are perceived as real, fairy tales may merge into legends, where the narrative is perceived both by teller and hearers as being grounded in historical truth. However, unlike legends and epics, they usually do not contain more than superficial references to religion and actual places, people, and events; they take place once upon a time rather than in actual times.
I think a lot of stories today are based on fairy tales. There seems to have been a resurgence of interest for many reasons. Tow highly successful television program—Once Upon a Time and Once Upon a Time in Wonderlandˆ— have combined several fairy tales into a long-running continuous story and have drawn a huge audience. Many romances today are base don fairy tales. Take a look at every story about the unpopular girl who nabs the hot jock, or the everyday woman who ends up in the lap of Mr. Wonderful. What could be better than that, right?
One of the many things fairy tales also give us is terrific villains. I have based so many of my villains on the Big Bad Wolf or Jack the Giant Killer. I love to write about evil villains who get their comeuppance and are vanquished by the hero. Oh, but then, we’re right back in the romance genre, right?
Try another one—Hansel and Gretel. The Wicked With entices them to her hut with a trail of breadcrumbs and it’s up to the good guys to rescue them. Well, how many stories do we read where the heroine is enticed by the villain with false promises and then ahs to be rescued by the hero.
Play a little game with yourself. The next book you read write down five words each about the hero, the heroine and the villain. Then skim through the descriptions of fairy tales and see which plot they fit into. I think you’ll be surprised at the results.
One of my favorites has always been Beauty and the Beast. When I wrote soul Dreams that’s what I based it on—a man scarred physically and emotionally who is finally healed by the love of a special woman. It’s a fairy tale and a Christmas story rolled into one I hope you’ll give it a try.
Books and More owner, Nina Foster doesn’t believe in love anymore. Twice, men have crushed her heart. Now, she’s resigned herself to making hot chocolate and baking cookies for the customers who enter her store. She won’t risk her heart again. Blake Massie hides away from the world, nursing his scars. He sees himself as a monster that no one could ever love. A self-imposed recluse, he won’t allow himself to open up, afraid of being burned like his fire-ravaged skin. Unable to reach out in person, the pair communicates via the Internet and hot, erotic fantasies. Night after night, they explore their growing passion with only a blindfold to protect their secrets. As Christmas approaches, Blake must share his pain if he is to ease hers, but doing so could drive her away forever. Can they take a chance and follow their deepest soul dreams, or will their fragile hearts continue to hide from the world and one another? Genre: Western romance, contemporary, erotic romance, holiday Heat level: 4 Word count – 42 Cover art by Scott Carpenter
Before she realized it, he tilted her to face him, one arm around her, the other hand cupping her chin. He pressed his lips against hers, a butterfly touch, so feather light it was barely there. She didn’t pull away, and the pressure increased. And when her arms came up to wrap around him, he traced the seam of her lips with his tongue.
He kissed one corner of her mouth then the other before murmuring, “Let me in. Please.”
It was the dream all over again, except this time she could actually taste him, and he was delicious. She opened her mouth to let his tongue sweep inside, and she offered him her own. It wasn’t the most passionate kiss she’d ever had or the most aggressive, but it certainly was the most possessive. As if he was somehow claiming ownership. And she had no desire to push him away.
She threaded her fingers through his hair, as smooth to the touch as his beard, and held his head to hers while he gently plundered her mouth. His tongue lit fires every place he touched, the heat flowing down through her body and making her muscles clench with desire. This was at once the most erotic and the most emotional kiss she’d ever shared, and she never wanted it to stop. It was only lack of oxygen that made them break the contact at last. She didn’t try to move away, hoping he’d take it as a sign not to let go. They sat there for a long moment, arms wrapped around each other, her head against his shoulder.
“I dreamed about kissing you like this.”
The words were whispered so faintly at first Nina wasn’t sure she heard correctly. “You did?”
“Uh huh. A lot.” He gently nipped her ear lobe. “About tasting you, inhaling your scent. Touching you everywhere. Do you dream that way?”
She squeezed her thighs together against the sudden hunger beating through her, her voice unsteady when she answered him. “Yes. Yes, I do.” She stroked his beard again. “Blake? Won’t you please take off the blindfold so I can see you?”
His muscles tightened for a moment then relaxed. “No. I can’t. Not yet. Please don’t ask me.” His laugh was forced. “Let’s keep this a fantasy for the time being, okay?”
“All right.” His words sounded so desperate, how could she say no?