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Twice Upon a Time: Rapunzel, The One With All the Hair

Twice Upon a Time: Rapunzel, The One With All the Hair is a middlegrade humorous fairy tale retelling by Wendy Mass.

What started off as a pretty okay day for Rapunzel turned into a totally sucky one. Suddenly she’s stolen by a witch, flung into a high tower (possibly with a heavy breathing ghost as a roommate), and doesn’t even know why her hair won’t stop growing!

Prince Benjamin, in the meantime, is finally getting a chance to do something. His mother never wants him out of her sight, but his father and troublesome cousin might be giving him the chance to get outside the castle for once – but will it just lead him to a troll?

Rapunzel and Prince Ben are trapped in different ways – is there a chance they could help each other?

But first they’ll have to actually MEET…

After the rather horrific reading experience I had with The Last Princess, I was glad to delve into something as lighthearted as Rapunzel. It’s goofy, silly, good-natured tone helped a lot!

I only wish that as an older reader I could really sink in and enjoy the fun like a younger reader could, but for me it didn’t translate age-difference-wise all that well. The narrative voice of Rapunzel and Prince Benjamin is lively but written in such a haphazard, erratic way that I had a difficult time reading it at times, making it a tad tedious.

But when it comes to the audience it’s intended for – I would say thirteen and under – I think Rapunzel’s great! It’s a new twist on an old story, and though the plot isn’t real clear and the characters are a little all over the place, it has a modern-kid sensibility that I believe will be enjoyed by many younger readers.

I will be giving Wendy Mass’ Twice Upon a Time twists on Sleeping Beauty and Beauty and the Beast a chance in the coming months as well, and maybe I’ll find myself more charmed as an older reader – we’ll see. In the meantime, I’d suggest keeping Rapunzel among the elementary crowd. They’ll be delighted!

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