Lies Knives and Girls In Red Dresses
illustrated by Andrea Dezso
from the book...
Once upon a time, a strung-out match girl sold CDs to stoners. Twelve impetuous sisters escaped King Daddy’s clutches to jiggle and cavort and wear out their shoes. Bluebeard's latest wife discovered she'd married a serial killer. And Little Red Riding Hood confessed that she kind of wanted to know what it’s like to be swallowed whole.
You see, Ron Koertge knows what really happened to all those wolves and maidens, ogres and orphans, kings and piglets of fairytales, and he knows about the Ever After. So come closer— he wants to whisper in your ear.
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"Sometimes when girls get together, they vow to put away their dreams forever because boys are creeps, sleazes, troglodytes and toads. They're poisoned apples, and spikes in the heart. Bulldozers with bad breath, gangplanks to walk off of, horny, grabby, promise-breaking bastards.
And yet. Images of Ever After linger on the retina. Isn't there somebody somewhere sweet as a flock of lambs. But smarter and taller."
Two sisters, always forgotten, tell their story of pain, desperation and failed plastic surgery in the attempt to win a charmed boy's hand. A naive girl with long hair describes her first encounter with a member of the opposite sex. An overlooked mole complains of an ill-fated wedding to a girl the size of a thumb. And a thrill-seeking teenager experiences first-hand the unusual sensation of being eaten by one's grandmother. In fairytales, this is just an ordinary day.
Lies, Knives and Girls in Red Dresses is written by Ron Koertge and beautifully illustrated by Andrea Dezsö using mixed media. The collection of short stories and poems address the other side of fairytales; the personal stories of side characters, the not-so-well-known endings or beginnings to popular classics. Gruesome, heartbreaking and captivating (just like any original Grimm tale!), Koertge has addressed fairytale lovers with one, if not THE, best book of firelight stories of the 21st century.
Ronja, Year 11, Canberra, Australia