Zombierella: Fairy Tales Gone Bad

By Joseph Coelho

Illustrated by Freya Hartas

The first in a funny, deliciously dark, three-part series of twisted classics, written in verse by award-winning poet Joseph Coelho and illustrated by Freya Hartas.

"Such a fun story with excellent illustrations ... with enough familiarity to feel known but with enough difference to make it quirky and original" Malorie Blackman A yellow moon hangs in a satin sky the night Cinderella, barefoot and in hand-me-downs, slips at the top of the stairs … and dies. But not for long. The Shadow of Death arrives to breathe life back into her bones and, for three nights only, Cinderella goes forth as ZOMBIERELLA. With her skin as cold as ice and her faithful horse Lumpkin back by her side, can she seek revenge on her three cruel, fake sisters, once and for all? Crawl out of the grave and step into your mushroom carriage for this haunting and humorous adventure of the undead girl searching for her happily ever after.

Categories: Fiction

For readers aged: 9+

  • Publication details:
  • Format: Paperback
  • ISBN: 9781406389661
  • Published: 03 Sep 2020
  • Price: £7.99
  • Size: 198 x 129 mm
  • Pages: 192

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Customer reviews


'Featured in The Bookseller's September Previews.' The Bookseller

'I think this book was great!!it was scary so it might frighten little children but it was super exiting and I loved even though it was frightening in some bits. My favorite characters are the three fake sisters.' Toppsta

'This book is glorious! The pages are glossy and each one is beautifully illustrated.' Toppsta

'My daughter really enjoyed this book and read it as soon as it arrived. it's got lots of illustrations so great for reluctant readers making the transition from picture to chapter books.' Toppsta

'I liked it because it was fascinating and had really cool drawings. The characters were great, especially the 3 fake sisters.' Words of my 7 year old RELUCTANT reader who wouldn't put this book down and read it in one sitting! Amazing! It's a fantastic book.' Toppsta

'Featured in ‘Dumas pere and Bumblebear: On Black and Asian British authors who deserve to be much better known’.' The Times

'From poet Joseph Coelho, there comes the first in another new series: dark fairytale retellings in verse, with pleasingly gruesome illustrations from Freya Hartas. Zombierella, starring an undead princess and a vampire prince, should appeal especially to the dauntless young reader.' The Guardian

'This zombiefied retelling of Cinderella is a gothic delight. Told in simple verse, with gorey graphics by Freya Hartas you’ll be cheering Cinders on from the cobwebbed pages as she goes to the ball to body-bag herself a prince.' WRD

'Readers of age six plus who like a scare will lap up Zombierella, the first book in the Fairy Tales Gone Bad series by Joseph Coelho and illustrated in gloriously gothic style by Freya Hartas.' The Irish Independent

'Coehlo's easy rhyming verse makes the story skip along while black and white illustrations from Freya Hartas complete the gently gothic picture.' The Irish Times

'Despite all the gore and the darkness, there is warmth and a subtle message of love and forgiveness, and it still manages to retain a happy ending. The book itself is a pleasure to hold, with thick glossy pages. Freya Hartas' black and white illustrations are delightfully gruesome and interact perfectly with the verses. These make great use of language, play with word s and rhythm, and the cast is diverse. This would be a great addition to any primary school library.' The School Librarian

'When I think of Christmas books, I imagine the usual traditional folk tales but this zombified retelling of Cinderella is an unusually delightful concoction of gruesomeness and contemporary edginess, making for a refreshing festive treat. […] With stunning glitzy-gothic illustrations and a beautifully embellished front cover, it's a deliciously vile 21st-century reimagining of a timeless classic that will have children squealing and howling in yucky delight!' Candid Cocoa

'Zombierella by Joseph Coelho, illustrated by Freya Hartas is brilliant, subversive twist on the story of Cinderella (she's a zombie, he has fangs and may sleep in a coffin) for seven to ten-year-olds. There's a fair bit of darkness, but ultimately it's about joy and acceptance. Written with great lyricism, we've enjoyed it hugely in our house.' The Big Issue

'A subversive fairy tale with a fantastic, lonely heroine, a hero who *might sleep in a coffin, and an anarchic twist. Ultimately, it's about connection and acceptance. We loved it in our house.' Sophie Dahl

'Such a fun story with excellent illustrations... with enough familiarity to feel known but with enough difference to make it quirky and original.' Malorie Blackman

'deliciously dark, twisted classics, written in verse by one of my favourite poets' Gareth P. Jones, Author

'Deliciously dark tales with a twist.' RTÉjr

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