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The plot is quite interesting and definitely adheres to the post-apocalyptic tone well. The premise that height dictates one's role in society is intriguing and holds a lot of potential-- enough potential that making this story's length longer would help the plot and world fully branch out to its fullest extent. To clarify, the story almost feels like I opened a book to the middle page and started reading from there. The shortness that it is at now only serves to obstruct the impact of the story and I am left wanting more! In addition, and I'm being picky here, but the imagery could use a little changing. For instance, the simile in the sentence, "I've been asked thousands of times, and the answer slips through my lips smooth like peanut butter", detracts from the tone. It also raises a couple of questions: how does she remember the texture of peanut butter? Has she eaten it recently, despite her lackluster diet? Etc.
Overall, the story uses some rhetoric strategies very well (like repetition) and the plot has me wanting to read more.
Not Your Usual Fairy Tale...
There are several ways that this story branches off from traditional fairy tales:
The most prominent, in my opinion, was the narration of the story. Rather than the usual third person omniscient teller, we were able to experience everything through the protagonist's eyes. Because of this, every character was allowed to fully develop rather than not; fairy tales often rely on the audience's preconceived notions of character tropes (traditional fairy tales will draw on the "evil stepmother/queen" and "prince charming" profiles) to quickly establish everyone's motivations.
The direction the author chose to go with these characters is also unique. Vanessa turns into the evil queen, but was first introduced as a loving human being. Her reason for turning "bad" is within reason, and the audience no longer sees her as just the evil queen that tried to kill Snow White. The relationship between Beatrix and Vanessa was also something I did not expect, which I appreciated. The refreshing twists kept adding on top of each other with each introduction of a character, and then, in the end, they all developed into the traditional characters we are familiar with from Snow White.
Also, I enjoyed the allusions to other fairy tale works in this story. Although the core themes remain true to the story of Snow White, there are also other elements-- the glass slipper, the red cape with the werewolf, etc.
I love the author's writing style; however, at times the story felt too long. Some chapters contain scenes that don't quite serve a purpose to the plot of the story, thus I rated that aspect a 4. Nonetheless, this story kept me reading late into the night!
This story juxtaposes its unique imagery and setting with its traditional plot progression (the protagonist discovers that he is able to wield magic, denies this discovery, then comes to embrace it but uses it for his own needs, and ultimately it destroys him). The author wields the right amount of imagery that is enough to aid one's imagination, but not kill it. In the end, although I'm left wondering about the two characters' backgrounds, it's more of a curious thought rather than a complaint. And overall, I'm glad this story was kept as a short story rather than a novel. The length, if any longer, would have lessened the impact of the story.Read the story now
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