Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Rosara and the Jungle King by Dorian Tsukioka

Song Stuck on the Brain: Smelly Cat by Phoebe Buffay (Friends)
I've been rewatching the series and I can't help it, it's been running through my mind regularly. :)

Story #4 in Five Enchanted Roses


I love fairy tales. I've lived and breathed them since I was a toddler. The originals are always good, but their strength is often shown in the many re-tellings. Like Shakespeare, fairy tales never age. Their theme's still speak to the heart of human nature today. I think that's why re-tellings are so popular. It allows us to connect to our childhood dreams and fantasies as well as find new ways to dream about and imagine our lives today. It's escape and therapy all rolled up in one.

Rosara and the Jungle King is one of the coolest re-imaginings I've read in a long time. A South American tribal spin on Beauty and the Beast is quite a step away from the original Grimm tale, yet the essential pieces that make it recognizable are all there. I loved that the beast was reflected in such a unique way. The Jungle King that saves Rosara isn't the only beast. (although he's probably the first beast I might just swoon a little over no matter which form he's in.) The allegorical reflections on what makes a beast truly a beast is clear and inspiring without being obvious. Instead, the action and emotions are strong and the story is fast paced. I loved it. In fact I'd even say brilliant and inspired.

After reading such a fantastic retelling, I had to read the rest of the novellas included in the Five Enchanted Roses. To my great happiness, every one of them was fun, unique and pretty much amazing in their creativity. If you only read one - don't miss Dorian Tsukioka's Rosara and the Jungle King. But trust me it's worth reading all five.


Maor has determined to take her as his third wife, by force if necessary. But Rosara would rather risk her life alone in the jungle than submit to any man’s brutality. When a beautiful jaguar tells her that it knows where to find one of the karawara, she resolves to seek out this jungle spirit and request its aid. The jaguar warns Rosara, however, that gifts from the karawara are never without a price

Read the whole collection:

Rediscover the Enchantment 
A ship bearing the souls of sinful sailors drifts upon a ghostly sea. An abbey looms as the final defense between mortals and ghouls of the underworld. In the stillness of a throne room, statues stand forever frozen in a moment of terror. Monsters and men stalk their prey deep in the jungle’s shadows. A rose blooms in the dead of winter, sheltered in the ruins of an ancient Scottish castle. And only true love can free the Beast from his prison.


Dorian Tsukioka writes fairy tale retellings, young adult fantasy, and science fiction with just a dash of romance thrown in to keep things spicy. When she's not writing, Dorian teaches 5th graders in Kansas City, MO, or she can be found chasing after her two, pixie-esque daughters. She has a love of learning and teaching, and loves to talk about books with anyone who will listen, especially if the conversation includes cinnamon-chip scones and caramel lattes.

To learn more about Dorian and her work, visit:

I received a free copy of the collection from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion.

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