Chatto & Windus
For this beautiful anthology of six masterpiece wonder tales, Marina Warner gathered five writers with a special sympathy for the French stories they render here in burnished, cunning and amusing English. The stories, The White Cat (translated by John Ashbery), The Subtle Princess (GilbertAdair), Bearskin and Starlight (Terence Cave), The Counterfeit Marquise (Ranjit Bolt), and The Great Green Worm (A.S. Byatt), are as unforgettable today as they were when first published centuries ago. Wonder is the key to the stories, and each tale abounds with transformation and magic.Wonders can be benign (like the garden fruits that come when you whistle) or baneful (like the bad fairy Magotine's spells), producing dread and desire at the same time. But, fortunately, they almost always punish those who deserve it: tyrants, seducers, and other forces of malevolence.