The Storymakers by Betsy Schow



Summary from Goodreads:

Fairy Tale Survival Rule #32: If you find yourself at the mercy of a wicked witch, sing a romantic ballad and wait for your Prince Charming to save the day.
spelledYeah, no thanks. Dorthea is completely princed out. Sure being the crown princess of Emerald has its perks—like Glenda Original ball gowns and Hans Christian Louboutin heels. But a forced marriage to the brooding prince Kato is so not what Dorthea had in mind for her enchanted future.
Talk about unhappily ever after.
Trying to fix her prince problem by wishing on a (cursed) star royally backfires, leaving the kingdom in chaos and her parents stuck in some place called “Kansas.” Now it’s up to Dorthea and her pixed off prince to find the mysterious Wizard of Oz and undo the curse…before it releases the wickedest witch of all and spells The End for the world of Story.


Summary from Goodreads:

Fairy-Tale Survival Rule No. 52:
No matter how difficult the obstacles or all-powerful the evil villain, one can rest assured that the wantedhero of the story never dies. The sidekicks though…they should be worried.

Rexi Hood is proud to be an outlaw. After all, she’s the daughter of the infamous Robin Hood. But sidekick? Accomplice? Sorry, that wasn’t in her story description. Yeah, she and Princess Dorthea of Emerald have been inseparable since they teamed up to fight the wickedest witch. But if Rexi doesn’t figure out how to break the curse that binds them, forget being overshadowed by the spirited princess, Rexi’s going to become a Forgotten, wiped from the pages of Story and reduced to a puddle of ink.
Not happening. No way in Spell.
Rexi’s plan? Steal the sword Excalibur and use its magic to write her own tale. But Gwenevere has opened a new Academy of Villains in Camelot and danger lurks behind every plot twist. And you know how it goes in Story: keep your friends close and your enemies closer…


This series is more of a story mash up than a retell.  You will recognize many characters from all different folktales, fairy tales and legends as well as references to popular stories.  Our main characters practically run over them at every page turn.  The first book is narrated by Dorthea and she is the reason that everything goes horribly wrong in this fantasy world.  Her sidekick Rexi Hood, narrates the second story, and as hard as she tries she can not correct Dorthea’s mistakes. Both characters struggle to do what is right but often mess it up in a big way.  Prince Kato is perhaps my favorite character, he tries so hard to help both girls, but is also unsuccessful and often makes things worse.

There is a lot to like about these books.  The constant puns and references to popular story culture is amusing. The evil characters always keep you on your toes as to what they are really up to. But it is a real struggle to keep all of the evil characters straight as they sometimes change personalities, as well as names, and can be good as well as evil.  It can get very confusing.  Dorthea and Rexi both got on my nerves at times.  Dorthea because she is too spoiled and emotional which often gets in her way of doing the right thing.  Rexi is more personable, but she is also gullible and too willing to do what anyone asks of her without thinking it through.  Some of that is not entirely her fault though, as she dies many times (13?) and every time she comes back to life she looses some of her memory.

Overall I do recommend these books especially if you like a humorous take on the story world.  I am very interested in seeing how the story ends.  The second book had quite the twist at the end.  I’m also curious as to who will narrate the next book, hopefully Kato, but I doubt it as he is not the most central character to the story. I also can’t wait to see the next cover.  It was definitely the covers that attracted me to these books in the first place.

Both books were reviewed from copies received from Netgalley.


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