Friday Review: The Sleeper and the Spindle by Neil Gaiman (Audiobook)

The Sleeper and the Spindle

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is a mash-up retelling of the fairy tales Sleeping Beauty and Snow White. In it, a young queen is preparing for her wedding, about which she has reservations. She is made aware of a spreading sleeping sickness that is fast approaching her borders. With three Dwarves as companions, she sets out to find the castle and the magic spell that started it all.

It’s probably no secret to many that I love Neil Gaiman’s writing. I also love fairy tales. So, this was kind of a win-win story for me. I enjoyed the twists Gaiman gives to the two original stories, and the way he blends them to make a cohesive new story. It has his trademark touches of sly humor and quirky characters. There isn’t a lot of epic adventure here; this is more of a quiet quest. But the story moves along well. Neither princess is a helpless victim of evil magic here, but neither is quite what she seems, as well. The Dwarves are solid companions and provide much of the humor.

I listened to the audiobook of this one. It was a full cast recording and I think that was an excellent choice. The principle cast is fairly small, so there are not a lot of voices to keep track of. The narrator (Julian Rhind-Tutt) is in turn sly, dark, witty, and charming, a lot like the story itself. The rest of the cast performs their parts well.

This is a quite lovely adaptation and retelling of two familiar fairy tales. It blends the stories with original material and gives us an old story with a nice new twist. I recommend the audio version. It’s only about an hour long and was a delight to listen to.

View all my reviews


The Demon’s in the Details, the third story in my urban fantasy series the Yo-Yo Files is now available.

Urban fantasy like the above not your thing? Well, I have science fiction and more traditional fantasy stories available, as well. Look here for all the deets on the above series and the rest of my published stories.