When Rump finds his mothers spinning wheel he has no idea that he is about to embark on a mind boggling adventure that will be told for generations to come - although not in quite the way he experiences it. When Rump tries to use the spinning wheel he discovers that he has the ability to spin common straw into strands of magical gold, a discovery that soon turns into a nightmare when the greedy Miller finds out his secret. When the gold loving King discovers that someone in his village can spin gold, Rump's life and the life of everyone in the village will never be the same again.
Rump is a wonderful retelling of the legend of Rumpelstiltskin, not only because Shurtliff has covered a part of the story that has not been covered before, but also because of the warmth and humour the story portrays. Rump is something of a victim of fate, but the people around him help him to discover who he really is and what his destiny will be. The characters range from villains to friends, through to family and idiotic kings. The elements of the traditional telling of Rumpelstiltskin are all there, but not quite as you expect.
This is a fun little story, and Shurtliff has a firm future in writing books for children if she can keep up the world creating and myth busting that she has created here. Often books like this are too clever for their own good, trying to be something they are not, but I didn't feel that about Rump at all - it is a book that is true to itself, but also manages to be true to the legend as well. It was a pleasure to read for the fun of it, to discover a world that is just a little different to what you thought it was going to be - a truly fractured fairytale.
If you like this book then try:
- Ella enchanted by Gail Carson Levine
- A true princess by Dianne Zahler
- Curse of the Thirteenth fey: The true story of Sleeping Beauty by Jane Yolen
- Enchanted by Alethea Kontis
- The fairytale detectives by Michael Buckley
- Snow in Summer: Fairest of them all by Jane Yolen
Reviewed by Brilla