Starflower – Anne Elisabeth Stengl
Starflower – Anne Elisabeth Stengl
When a cursed dragon-witch kidnaps the lovely Lady Gleamdren, Eanrin sets boldly forth on a rescue mission…and a race against his rival for Gleamdren’s favor. Intent upon his quest, the last thing the immortal Faerie needs is to become mixed up with the troubles of an insignificant mortal.
But when he stumbles upon a maiden trapped in an enchanted sleep, he cannot leave her alone in the dangerous Wood Between. One waking kiss later, Eanrin suddenly finds his story entangled with that of young Starflower. A strange link exists between this mortal girl and the dragon-witch. Will Starflower prove the key to Lady Gleamdren’s rescue? Or will the dark power from which she flees destroy both her and her rescuer?
Top Ten Favorite & Unusual Fairy Tales
1. The Snow Queen: One of the best strong-heroine fairy tales out there! I’ve always loved this mysterious and beautiful fairy tale by Hans Christian Anderson.
2. The Ballad of Tam Lin: One of the darkest fairy tales you’ll ever encounter, told in poetry. Tam Lin has gone on to be a major influence on many of my favorite authors, including the fabulous Diana Wynne Jones. My most recent manuscript was heavily inspired by this fairy tale as well. I high recommend it!
3. The Princess and the Pea: On separate occasions, someone asked one of my grandfathers and my husband (then boyfriend) which princess I would be if I were in a fairy tale, and both of them answered “The Princess and the Pea.” Huh? My boyfriend went on to explain that he did not mean I was ultra sensitive (thanks!), but that my true princess nature would be obvious, no matter the circumstances. Awwwww . . . okay, now I like that fairy tale. J
4. The White Cat: A variation on Beauty and the Beast, only this time the princess is the one under enchantment! And, as a crazy-cat-lady, I am bound to love this particular tale . . . .
5. The Yellow Dwarf: Another Beauty and the Beast variation, but this time the “beast” is the villain. I was surprised when I first read this tale by how long it is. But it’s very good . . . and the tragic ending is enough to make you cry!
6. The Magic Carpet, the Tube, and the Apple: An Indian fairy tale featuring the exploits of brave Prince Ahmed and the beautiful fairy, Perie Banou. I was intrigued by this tale when I first read it, and Perie Banou has been one of my favorite fairies ever since.
7. Photogen and Nycteris: A gorgeous fairy tale written by George MacDonald. I remember the first time I read it, I was utterly enthralled! I have returned to that tale many times for inspiration over the years, and every time I am amazed at MacDonald’s mastery of fairy tales.
8. The Marsh King’s Daughter: Another fairy tale by Hans Christian Anderson. In a way, it’s a variation on Beauty and the Beast and The Little Mermaid, but ultimately comes across as its very own tale. Long ago I read it aloud to my best friend, and we were both so inspired, we set out to write a novel version of it together. The novel came to nothing, but I have loved the fairy tale ever since . . .
9. The Light Princess: Another fairy tale by George MacDonald. In this one, he plays with themes from Sleeping Beauty, such as the irked fairy godmother and the curse on the infant princess. But again, he takes it in wild and wonderful new directions, adding a large dash of humor along the way. But don’t let the humor fool you . . . I was in tears for the ending, which was very beautiful!
10. The Birthday of the Infanta: One of Oscar Wilde’s fairy tales . . . and because it is by Oscar Wilde, you know it’s going to be beautifully written and utterly heartbreaking. Another fairy tale that moved me to tears by the end, though it started out light-hearted enough. I highly recommend all of Oscar Wilde’s fairy tales to enthusiasts of the genre.
Author Anne Elisabeth Stengl
Anne Elisabeth Stengl makes her home in Raleigh, North Carolina, where she lives with her husband, Rohan, a passel of cats, and one long-suffering dog. When she’s not writing, she enjoys Shakespeare, opera, and tea, and studies piano, painting, and pastry baking. She studied illustration at Grace College and English literature at Campbell University. She is the author of HEARTLESS, VEILED ROSE, MOONBLOOD, and STARFLOWER, with DRAGONWITCH due to release in 2013. HEARTLESS and VEILED ROSE have each been honored with a Christy Award.