Sub-genre of the Week: Fairytale Fantasy
Last week, I discussed Near-future SF. This week, I’m going to talk about a newly re-popularized genre of fantasy: fairytale re-tellings.
Fairytale fiction is a sub-genre of speculative that revolves around re-tellings of fairytales in new settings, with new characters, or from the perspective of a previously non-perspective character, and also fairytale style stories.
Fairytale retellings have been around for as long as there have been fairytales, but in the past decade or so, they’ve come together as a commercial genre.
Common Tropes and Conventions
The same as those for fairytales: secret royal birth, HEA endings, marriage into a royal family, something dangerous in the nearby woods, etc.
Fairytale fiction is unique among fantasy genres for generally having very little crossover. The specifics of the stories usually preclude it. It’s certainly possible to create high or epic fantasy out of fairytales, but people usually file off the serial numbers if they do so.
Robin Hood has always been popular in film, and Snow White has just recently received multiple adaptions. No doubt there will be more in the future.
Fairytale fiction will no doubt continue to be popular for the near-future. Although the most popular stories now have four or five major retellings, there are plenty of lesser known stories still awaiting a re-imagining.
Goodreads list of Fairytale Fantasy
Next week: Cyberpunk