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Literature / Fairytale Novels

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The Fairy Tale Novels, a series of books by Regina Doman, take somewhat well-known fairy tales and move the setting to a modern-day setting - let's say New York. The cast: a bunch of Catholic teenagers. In this world, a sleeping spell is a coma, a magical passageway becomes a locked-away staircase that leads out of the house, the seven dwarves are replaced by seven quirky Franciscan friars, and so on.


There are currently six books in the series: The Shadow of the Bear, Black as Night, Waking Rose, The Midnight Dancers, Alex O'Donnell and the Forty CyberThieves, and Rapunzel Let Down.

You can find the website here.

These books provide examples of:

  • Action Film, Quiet Drama Scene: In Alex O'Donnell and the Forty Cyber Thieves, when Alex and Kateri are sitting by the pool discussing Alex's uncle who was just murdered.
  • Action Girl: Kateri Kovach, particularly compared to the series' other heroines.
  • Adult Fear: Lots of this- Your child getting stalked and attacked while you're out of state, getting framed for drug possession, your daughters getting put into mysterious comas (at different times), kidnapping...
  • Amateur Sleuth: Rose and Blanche, but especially Rose.
  • Battle Couple: Alex and Kateri.
  • Big Brother Instinct: Bear got his nickname in juvenile detention when he saw three inmates trying to drown Fish. He threw one against the wall, the other two ran away, and we can assume both the Denniston brothers were carefully respected afterwards.
    • Fish tells Rose this is how he feels about her; he doesn't let himself fall in love with her at first, but still goes to great lengths to protect her.
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    • Brother Charley to Brother Leon in the second book, and nearly all the friars to Blanche.
  • Brains and Brawn: Fish and Bear, respectively, when they're working as a Sibling Team. Not that Bear is by any means stupid, or that Fish can't take care of himself.
  • Christianity Is Catholic: Given that the author is a devout Catholic, Protestant characters don't exist.
    • Not true, as of Midnight Dancers.
  • Cool Sword: Alex's various Japanese weapons.
  • Damsel in Distress: Usually the girls, but the guys have their moments, too.
    • For Blanche, who has the looks and demeanor to go with it, it's even Lampshaded.
  • Dance Battler: When Kateri finally does the fan dance in Alex O'Donnell and the Forty Cyberthieves.
    "Remain still. Or you, sir, are dead."
  • Dark and Troubled Past: As revealed over the second and third books, Bear and Fish have a whopper: while their mother was dying of cancer in a hospital, she and they converted, enthusiastically, to Catholicism, so the boys started going to St. Catherine's high school; they were nerds and bullied - especially Fish, who was thought to be gay and was sexually taunted by an adult man; Father Raymond, the closest thing they had to a normal dad, died under mysterious circumstances, and they started investigating; Mr. Freet, fearing they would suspect him, planted cocaine in their lockers; when they got out of juvenile detention, Bear discovered his father was having an affair; the other woman moved in, and married their father after their mother had finally died; she resented the boys, especially Bear because he had preached unsuccessfully against the affair; but she was also attracted to Bear, and when he refused to give her the wrong kind of kiss, he and Fish got framed for drug possession AGAIN; the charge didn't stick, but their father turned them out of the house without giving them their inheritance from their mother; so they lived at their friend Stephen Foster's house while still illegally investigating Father Raymond's death. That's excluding what happened to Fish offscreen in The Shadow of the Bear.
  • Darker and Edgier: Black as Night. Blanche is on the run after being framed for drug possession and grand theft...
    • As of Rapunzel Let Down, which deals with teen pregnancy, illegal immigration, homelessness, prison, kidnapping, and worse, we have a new winner in this category.
    • The author states she intended the books to alternate between this and Lighter and Softer, but didn't completely succeed. Black as Night - darker and edgier. Waking Rose - even more dark. The Midnight Dancers - serious, but more gentle and philosophical in tone. Alex O'Donnell and the Forty Cyber Thieves - even the title is lighter and softer; there's a lot more humor, and the action scenes get decidedly cartoony. Rapunzel Let Down - isn't even put in the YA section with the others; it was published as adult fiction.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen: Fish in "Waking Rose" is a male example. Rachel Durham from "The Midnight Dancers" also qualifies.
  • Distressed Dude: Every male hero gets tied up and humiliated at least once.
  • Everything's Better with Princesses: Rose has a theory that no one is really what they seem. Fish is her Prince Charming, her godmother is a fairy, and so on.
  • Extraverted Nerd: Rose's guy friends at college, but Alex the most by far.
    • Rose herself definitely counts.
  • Freudian Excuse: Both villains in "Rapunzel Let Down" had abusive fathers. One follows his father's example, the other hates all men.
  • Fun Personified: Both Br. Leon (from Black as Night) and Alex O'Donnell count.
  • Genius Bruiser: As it turns out, Bear writes poetry.
    • Raphaela from 'Rapunzel Let Down' as well, much to her mother's disapproval.
  • Goshdang It To Heck: This is Christian fiction. Rose's swear words get pretty bizarre, though. ("Holy candlesticks, sister!")
  • Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: Bear and Blanche.
  • Katanas Are Just Better: ALEX. He does end up breaking one in a fight, though.
  • Massive Numbered Siblings: The Durhams have fourteen kids. The Kovachs have plenty, too.
    • So does Raphaela. Turns out she has 13 biological siblings in Mexico!
  • Meaningful Name: Rose (has red hair, a fiery spirit, and is named for the fairy tale character Rose Red and Briar Rose); Blanche (means white, is quiet and gentle, and named after both Snow Whites); Brier, their surname, means Rose. So their names mean Rose Red ('rose' is a shade of red) and Rose White (in some variations of the story, Snow White's name is changed to this).
    • Bear points Blanche's name out to her and jokingly calls her Snow White.
    • Bear is named for being brawny and protective of his younger brother, Fish, who is named for managing to slip out of bad situations. However, their proper names are Arthur and Benedict (Fish's other nickname is Ben).
    • It gets better. The name Arthur means Bear.
    • Hermes is the god of thieves and gambling. Hermes 'stole' Raphaela's innocence and loves risks.
  • Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot: Paul from "The Midnight Dancers" is a ninja clown! Who also plays the flute!
  • Number of the Beast: The villain's keypad code in "The Shadow of the Bear."
  • Prince Charming: Bear and Fish play this in different books for each of their love interests. Paul is also seen as this trope by a somewhat jealous Fish in "Waking Rose".
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Red-haired Rose (romantic, adventurous Cloudcuckoolander) and black-haired Blanche (shy and sensible, with a Sugar-and-Ice Personality).
  • Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: Played with with the Denniston brothers. Bear is a burly, serious guy with a fierce temper should you cross him, but he has a deep appreciation for art, poetry, and architecture. Fish is scrawny, geeky, and uses brains over brawn, but he's not a romantic at all like his brother and can come off as harsh because he lacks sensitivity.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Fish, Alex, Kateri, Raphaela, Hermes, and Rose to an extent in her own book.
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: Political activist Kateri is the Tomboy to the Girly Girls Blanche and Rose, who like dresses, sewing, and romance. Also Raphaela's mother and Raph herself.
  • Twice-Told Tale: All of the books.


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