Book Tour: Other Ever Afters: New Queer Fairy Tales by Melanie Gilman | Review & Author Interview

Welcome to my stop on the TBR and Beyond Tours Book Tour for Other Ever Afters: New Queer Fairy Tales by Melanie Gillman. I’ve read one of Melanie’s graphic novels before and loved the artstyle and story telling, so I couldn’t wait to start this one. I was lucky enough to get an interview with Melanie, which you can find after my review. Be sure to also scroll all the way to the bottom to see the tour schedule for other content creators.

Thank you to Melanie Gillman for the interview and Random House Graphic for providing me with an eARC for this review.

Meet Author

Lorem ipsumMelanie Gillman is the cartoonist behind this story.  They hold an MFA in comics from the Center for Cartoon Studies, and currently live in Columbus, OH.  Melanie is also the author of Stage Dreams, a lesbian western graphic novel, available from Lerner/Graphic Universe.  They are represented by Jen Linnan, of Linnan Literary Management.

About The Book

Title: Other Ever Afters: New Queer Fairy Tales
Author: Melanie Gillman
Publisher: Random House Graphic
Publishing Date: September 20th, 2022
Page Length: 240
Genre: Fantasy | Graphic Novel
Age Range: YA
Rating: 4⭐
Rep: Multiple Queer Representation
Synopsis:

Once upon a time . . . happily ever after turned out differently than expected. In this new, feminist, queer fairy-tale collection, you’ll find the princesses, mermaids, knights, barmaids, children, and wise old women who have been forced to sit on the sidelines in classic stories taking center stage. A gorgeous all-new collection in graphic novel format from a Stonewall Honor-winning author and artist.

What if the giant who abducted you was actually thoughtful and kind? What if you didn’t want to marry your handsome, popular, but cold-inside suitor? What if your one true love has all the responsibilities that come with running a kingdom?

Award-winning author Melanie Gillman’s phenomenal colored-pencil art creates another “ever after” for the characters who are most worthy of it.

Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Indigo | IndieBound

My Thoughts

This was an emotional collection of short fairytales with beautiful artwork and messages!  Each one provided an important message that should be read by all! With so little said in each, I never felt the messages were heavy handed, and I wouldn’t be surprised to find each reader getting their own message from each story.  I felt some form of emotion, usually different, from each one: betrayal, hopefulness, acceptance and more.  

When I initially received the widget for this graphic novel, I took a quick skim to check out the artwork and fell in love.  I knew I had to read each story in detail and find out what these pastel-soft art style were telling.  The colour palette and character design reminded me of Stage Dreams immediately, which shouldn’t have surprised me since that’s also their work. It also had a similar feel to Come Back and Across A Field of Starlight – heartwarming with beautiful artwork and messages.  I highly recommend this set of queer fairytale stories, with my favourites being The King’s Forest, The Goose Girl, and Hsthete!

Author Interview

In up to 9 words or emojis, without spoilers, what can readers expect from Other Ever Afters: New Queer Fairy Tales?

Marrying handsome princes < marrying terrifying man-eating monster women

How did you pick the fairytales you wanted to revamp? Were there any that just missed the cut?

No fairy tales were revamped at all!  All the stories in the book are original – I made them up.  A lot of people seem to think they must be adaptations of actual real-life obscure fairy tales, though, which hopefully means I did my job well.

You mentioned in your acknowledgements that this graphic novel originally started as a 24-hour Comics Day event.  Are you able to explain how this affected your process and how it grew into this beautiful graphic novel?

24 Hour Comics Day is an annual comics event where cartoonists are challenged to draw 24 pages of comics in 24 hours.  Because I’m generally trying to keep my drawing hand from falling off, I have an annual tradition of cheating (drawing fewer than 24 pages, penciling pages ahead of time, etc.) – but it’s still a fun challenge.  Every year, I post my pages on twitter as I finish them, so people can read the story in real time as I’m drawing it.  It ends up feeling like a mini webcomic, which updates about once an hour and only lasts for a single weekend.  It’s a lot of fun for me, because I get to watch how readers react to each new page!

What does your drawing space look like?

I like to work out of the house, at coffee shops most of the time!  My colored pencil work is very portable, thankfully, so I tend to walk to a different neighborhood cafe every day to do my drawing.  Ideally, I like a quiet place where I can sit outside, see some trees, and nurse a cup of coffee for a few hours!

You have a number of graphic novels published, do you have any upcoming projects that you could share?

Most of my upcoming projects haven’t been announced, sadly!  I can say that most of them are horror, though, and I’ve been drawing a lot of weird fashion and weirder insects.

Do you have any recommendations of other LGBTQIA+ graphic novels if the reader loved Other Ever Afters: New Queer Fairy Tales, Stage Dreams, and As the Crow Flies?

Some of my favorites: The Princess and The Dressmaker (Jen Wang), Curveball (Jeremy Sorese), Letters for Lucardo (Otava Heikkilä), The Less than Epic Adventures of TJ and Amal (EK Weaver), and Stone Fruit (Lee Lai)

Tour Schedule

Blog Schedule

September 19th
Kait Plus Books – Interview
Never Hollowed By The Stare – Promotional Post
Paiges of Novels – Review & Favorite Quotes

September 20th
Twirling Book Princess – Top 5 Reasons to Read Other Ever Afters
Jenerally Reading – Review

September 21st
Kappa Reads Books – Top 5 Reasons to Read Other Ever Afters
Midsummer Night’s Read – Review
Forever In A Story – Review & Mood Board

September 22nd
Melancholic Blithe – Interview
PopTheButterfly Reads – Review

September 23rd
The Book Dutchesses – Promotional Post
Reading Stewardess – Review
Library of Becca – Review & Mood Board

September 24th
Althea Is Reading – Review
Stuck in Fiction – Promotional Post

September 25th
Nine Bookish Lives – Interview
Thought Scribbler’s Blog – Review & Favorite Quotes
The Nutty Bookworm Reads Alot – Review

Instagram Schedule

September 19th
tbrandbeyond – Promotional Post
kaitplusbooks – Blogger’s Choice
paiges_of_novels – Blogger’s Choice

September 20th
writingrosereads – Promotional Post

September 21st
booking.with.janelle – Review
foreverinastory – Blogger’s Choice

September 22nd
libraryofretellingsandstars – Review
popthebutterfly – Blogger’s Choice

September 23rd
books_and_dice – Review & Favorite Quotes
library.of.becca – Blogger’s Choice

September 24th
luna_reads_ – Journal Spread

September 25th
mulberryreads – Review
ninebookishlives – Blogger’s Choice
lunatonks_777 – Blogger’s Choice

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