Sunday, August 22, 2010

Review: The Grimm Legacy

The Grimm Legacy by Polly Shulman

publisher: Putnam Juvenile

release date: July 8, 2009

hardcover, 336 pages

intended audience: Young adult


description from goodreads:
Elizabeth has a new job at an unusual library— a lending library of objects, not books. In a secret room in the basement lies the Grimm Collection. That’s where the librarians lock away powerful items straight out of the Brothers Grimm fairy tales: seven-league boots, a table that produces a feast at the blink of an eye, Snow White’s stepmother’s sinister mirror that talks in riddles.

When the magical objects start to disappear, Elizabeth embarks on a dangerous quest to catch the thief before she can be accused of the crime—or captured by the thief.

Polly Shulman has created a contemporary fantasy with a fascinating setting and premise, starring an ordinary girl whose after-school job is far from ordinary— and leads to a world of excitement, romance and magical intrigue.

Review: Just the cover is enough to pull in a die-hard lover of all things fantasy, and the title's implication of a story steeped in Brothers Grimm fairy tale magic was enough to have me waiting in line to snatch this one up on it's release day. Strangely enough, Barnes has this one hidden in the childrens section of their store (even though it says right on their site that it is YA) so I had to do a little searching and asking. Now that I've read it, I have to say they have it misshelved! This is definitely YA---alittle lighter than most of what's out there these days, but still definitely YA. For one thing, the main characters were all high school age, and there was some definite PG-rated kissing!

Ok, now onto the actual review. :) This book was enchanting. For those of us who know and love either some or all of the Grimm Fairy Tales, this book read like an old familiar friend. It completely stirs the imagination. The setup was alittle slow, it took about fifty pages in to really get the fun part of the story going as the protagonist, Elizabeth, aquires the job at the repository and learns the ropes. The fun starts when she starts learning about the Grimm collection---real magical items from all the classic fairy tales! Who hasn't daydreamed about what they would do with a flying carpet, winged shoes, or a table that sets itself with plates of delicious food?? Then the adventure really takes off when items and repository employees start disappearing. Elizabeth and her friends can't decide who to trust (including each other!) so they take it in their own hands to solve the mystery! It's definitely a fun ride, everything is very visual and I can see this making an incredible movie someday. *crosses fingers!*

Elizabeth is a great character, she is smart and kind and considerate of others which in the end serves her well! I would have liked to know a little more about her background, because her life beyond school and this new job is just barely presented. I really liked how each character seemed to have a good side and a bad side---it really kept you guessing who the culprits were!

All in all, a great read! Light and adventurous, and very magical!

Added note on the cover : What is that glorious material they are now using on some bookcovers these days? The Grimm Legacy's cover was made of that same buttery soft material as those lovely Fallen (Lauren Kate) covers. I just want to run my hands over them all day, like velvet! I believe A Blue So Dark had it, too. Gimme more! I love it!


Visit Polly Shulman's site HERE.

Order The Grimm Legacy:
Barnes & Noble
Book Depository


  1. Oh my goodness, I don't think I've been this excited to read a book in such a long time! Thanks for the review! :)

  2. I really enjoyed this one too--I thought it was especially funny for librarians to read, with all the Dewey numbers assigned to the different objects!

  3. I've been waiting with some trepidation to read a review of this. I love the Grimm tales and was worried that this book might be a huge let down but from what you've said it is going to be everything I hoped for! Thanks for such a great review.

  4. Great review!

    This one is sitting in my TBR pile. I love the cover!

  5. Great review! I've actually never heard of this book before but it's defintely on my radar now. :)