Book Review: The Grimm Legacy, by Polly Shulman
My rating: 1 of 5 stars
In general, I’m a fan of taking old stories and bringing them up to a modern audience. Cinder, Sherlock, and the new Star Trek movies have all found a place in my heart. Even some of the Grimm reworkings have been quite good, but this book is not one of those.
It started out well enough. A young girl finds her way to a job at an amazing library, the New York Circulating Material Repository, which houses, among other things, magical items collected by the Brothers Grimm. There are all sorts of fun references to Snow White’s magic mirror and Lincoln’s Hat and the Table-Be-Set table. In that way, it reminded me a lot of Warehouse 13, which is probably why I stuck with it so long. At the end of the day, though, that sort of cleverness can only get you so far. The characters never really gained any real depth, nor did the story become anything more complicated than it first appeared. The good guys are the good guys; the bad guys are the bad guys; the couples form just as you would expect them to. Even for a middle school audience, I thought this novel fell flat. I know they’re kids, but give them a little credit.
It held my attention early, largely because of the gimmick, but a general lack of pace and action started to grate on my nerves. Then the shrink ray happened. I won’t go into it, because if you’ve seen Honey I Shrunk the Kids, you know all you need to know. Suffice it to say, there are better ways to spend your reading hours.