Jane Yolen’s impressive HOW TO FRACTURE A FAIRY TALE wins Anne Izard Storytellers’ Choice Award

The Westchester Library Association announced the 2019 winners of Anne Izard Storytellers’ Choice Award. Both Jane Yolen ‘s HOW TO FRACTURE A FAIRY TALE and Once There Was a Story were recognized.

This award was established to honor Anne Izard, the noted librarian, storyteller and Children’s Services Consultant in Westchester County (NY) who died in 1990. It is hoped the award will highlight and promote distinguished titles published in the field of storytelling and in doing so, bring the many riches of storytelling itself to a much greater public recognition.

  • The Annotated African-American Folktales (Henry Louis Gates, Jr. & Maria Tatar)
  • Beauty and the Beast (Maria Tatar)
  • Brave Red, Smart Frog (Emily Jenkins)
  • Crane Girl (Curtis Manley)
  • Daemon Voices (Philip Pullman)
  • Dancing on Blades (Csenge Zalka)
  • Manjhi Moves a Mountain (Nancy Churnin)
  • Norse Myths (Kevin Crossley-Holland)
  • Norse Mythology (Neil Gaiman)
  • Once There Was a Story (Jane Yolen)
  • The Rooster Who Would Not Be Quiet (Carmen Deedy)
  • Thank You, Omu (Oge Mora)

Congratulations to all the winners

Photo: Jason Stemple

Gary K. Wolfe at LOCUS praised the collection.

Yolen draws on an impressive variety of other folk and fairy tale traditions – Chinese dragon stories (“One Ox, Two Ox, Three Ox, and the Dragon King”), Greek mythology (“Sun/Flight”, a variation on Icarus), Japanese kitsune stories (“The Fox Wife”), Scottish legends (“The Faery Flag”, “Sule Skerry”), Arthuriana (“The Gwynfahr”), Native American tales (“The Woman Who Loved a Bear”), even vampire lore (the surprisingly tender tale of a revenant mom, “Mama Gone”). The poems which accompany the story comments at the end of the book also offer additional perspectives – sometimes a bit sharper and more directly political – on the themes of the stories. If THE EMERALD CIRCUS provided an extensive overview of Yolen’s dia­logue with many of her literary predecessors from Andersen to Baum, HOW TO FRACTURE A FAIRY TALE serves as a useful and timely companion volume, demonstrating an equally astute and critical dialogue with the world’s folk traditions. While nine of these stories were included in the NESFA retrospective Once Upon a Time (She Said) in 2005, and a half dozen were in Sister Emily’s Lightship and Other Stories way back in 2000, these Tachyon volumes are an invaluable reminder of Yolen’s central role in contemporary fantasy, and perhaps an equally invaluable start­ing point for readers daunted by the sheer volume and variety of her work.


This collects many of Yolen’s previously published fairy tale retellings and includes her notes on the tales, too. Some are short stories, others are poems. A very handy collection of Yolen’s short fairy tale works.

For more info on HOW TO FRACTURE A FAIRY TALE, visit the Tachyon page.

For more info on THE EMERALD CIRCUS, visit the Tachyon page.

Cover designs by Elizabeth Story