Though The Twelve Dancing Princesses is not as popular as the many fairy tales Disney has adapted, it’s still a better known fairy tale and has quite a few adaptions–both in book and movie format! Today I thought it would be fun to take a look at some of them, and the differences between the stories. It’s surprisingly quite long–though most of them are indie published and not traditionally published.
The Twelve Dancing Princesses: By K. M. Shea–that’s me, and yes this is a shameless plug: My version has a lot of battles and magical fights in addition to witty banter, elves, sweet romance, and more! If you’re a fan of Tamora Pierce or Sarah J Maas, this retelling is going to be right up your alley.
The Princess Curse: By Merrie Haskell: This is undoubtedly the funniest–and in my opinion, the best–retelling of the original fairy tale ever! It’s very light on the romance due to the main character’s age and leaves you still wanting more when it’s done, but it presents a traditional melding of the two different versions of the 12 dancing princesses that are most known today. Seriously, you need to read it!!
Entwined: By Heather Dixon: This is a YA retelling that mostly revolves around the romance aspect. (It’s been ages since I’ve read it, but I do recall it being a diverting read!)
Princess of the Midnight Ball: By Jessica Day George: This book is from the perspective of both the princess and the soldier–which is always a plus–and to make it even better, the soldier is not the typical hero (he knits) which makes him really interesting! Additionally, The villain has a different motive that really stands out from the rest of the pack as well.
A Dance of Silver and Shadows: By Mellanie Cellier: What makes this book unique is that the main character in this story is a twin, and she and her sister actually appeared in some of Mellanie’s earlier work. Additionally, the set up is very different as the 10 other girls involved in the story are princesses, but they are not Lilly’s sisters. (Well, besides her twin, anyway!)
Pirouette: by Kenley Davidson: Kenlely’s work always has amazing romance, but I think this book of hers uses some especially masterful plot-twists. It’s the third book in a series, The Andari Chronicles, but the books are all stand alone so you can read it without knowing anything about the two previous books.
The Firethorn Crown: by Lea Douge: This is another YA retelling, but it focuses more on the sisters’ relationship than many of the books I’ve listed above. The way the curse ends up coming down on the girls is very interesting, and the series is set up so you follow the younger sisters on to new adventures once this book is finished.
Other retellings that I have not read–so I can’t vouch for them–but I know they exist: A Branch of Silver a Branch of Gold–by Anne Elisabeth Stengl; Moon Dance–by Christine Pope; and The Twelve Dancing Princesses–by Jenni James.
Do you any other retellings, Champions? Please mention them in the comments below, and share this post with any friends you think need more dancing princesses in their life. 😉
Edit: Thanks Champions for all the suggestions below in the comments! I’m adding links to those:
Wildwood Dancing – Juliet Marillier
The Door in the Hedge – Robin McKinley
The Thirteenth Princess – Diane Zahler
My Fairly Dangerous Godmother – Janette Rallison
The Night Dance – Suzanne Weyn
The Girls at the Kingfisher Club – Genevieve Valentine