Archive for the 'Fairytale' Category

Wall Street Journal runs op-ed piece by NewSouth’s favorite M.D., Dr. Valerie Gribben

Tuesday, August 13th, 2013 by Suzanne La Rosa

The Fairytale Trilogy by Valerie GribbenValerie Gribben, author of a popular work of young adult fiction called Fairytale, published by NewSouth Books when Gribben was just 16 (and newly expanded into the Fairytale Trilogy), shows a mature side of her storytelling skills in an op-ed piece that appears in today’s Wall Street Journal.

Now a pediatrics resident at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford University, Dr. Gribben describes the role she sees the smartphone coming to play in the medical diagnosis and treatment of childhood illness. Her own smartphone, she says, “is stocked with complex pediatric dosing, advanced life-support algorithms for optimal resuscitation and specialized textbooks for late-night reading . . . . But the simple camera phone is epochal in that it puts the power—literally—into the hands of patients.” Ever thoughtful about how she can improve the quality of care for her patients, Dr. Gribben advocates for the new technology on their behalf.

Read “Take Two Photos and Call Me in the Morning” at the Wall Street Journal website.

New York Times responses to Gribben’s fairytales, medicine op-ed

Friday, July 8th, 2011 by Brian Seidman

The Fairytale Trilogy by Valerie GribbenValerie Gribben’s recent New York Times op-ed, “Practicing Medicine Can Be Grimm Work,” has received lovely responses from across the country. In their Letters section, under the heading “When ‘ER’ Met ‘Hansel and Gretel,” the New York Times has published some of those responses.

Gribben is a medical student and the author of The Fairytale Trilogy, a collection of three young adult fantasy novels including one that Gribben published at just sixteen-years-old. Her New York Times op-ed discussed how her love of fairytales has brought her greater understanding of her patients.

“Valerie Gribben’s well-written article is insightful and true: a sense for stories helps sensitize future physicians and enables them to greater imagine the world of others,” writes Geoff Rubin, a fourth-year medical student at Columbia University.

Clinical psychologist Sherry Gardner of Cheyenne, Wyoming, offered to be the “first in line” when Valerie emerges as a doctor in a few years. “When I was on the faculty at Northwestern University Medical School, we debated whether empathy could be taught to medical students,” Gardner writes. “Ms. Gribben clearly possesses and values empathy, and I daresay her history with fairy tales contributed to her development.”

Other letters came from Margaret Parker of Ann Arbor, Michigan, and periodontist Bill Lavine of West Hartford, Connecticut. Read all the responses at the New York Times website.

Valerie Gribben’s The Fairytale Trilogy is available from NewSouth Books,, or your favorite retail or online bookseller.

Valerie Gribben talks fairytales, medicine in New York Times

Thursday, June 30th, 2011 by Noelle Matteson

The Fairytale Trilogy by Valerie GribbenAn essay by NewSouth Books author Valerie Gribben, “Practicing Medicine Can Be Grimm Work,” appears in today’s New York Times Op-Ed pages. Gribben, a medical student at the University of Alabama, Birmingham, is the author of The Fairytale Trilogy, a collection of three of her young adult fantasy novels, including one she published with NewSouth when she was only sixteen years old.

In her essay, Gribben remarks on how her fascination with fairytales has informed her understanding of her patients as a medical student. Though for a time she set aside her storybooks for more scholarly pursuits, she realizes now how those stories illuminate human behavior, both good and bad. From the essay:

The Grimm fairy tales once seemed like they took place in lands far, far away, but I see them now in my everyday hospital rotations. I’ve already met many of the eternal cast of characters. I’ve taken down their histories—the abandoned prince, the barren couple—or seen their handiwork—the evil stepmother, the lecherous king.

Fairy tales are, at their core, heightened portrayals of human nature, revealing, as the glare of injury and illness does, the underbelly of mankind. Both fairy tales and medical charts chronicle the bizarre, the unfair, the tragic. And the terrifying things that go bump in the night are what physicians treat at 3 a.m. in emergency rooms …

Fairy tales also remind me that what I’m seeing now has come before. Child endangerment is not an invention of the Facebook Age. Elder neglect didn’t arrive with Gen X. And discharge summaries are not always happy; Death in his tattered shroud waits at the end of many journeys.

Healing, I’m learning, begins with kindness, and most fairy tales teach us to show kindness wherever we can, to the stooped little beggar and the highest nobleman. In another year, I, too, will be among the new medical doctors embarking on another phase of my training. The Brothers Grimm will accompany me.

Read Gribben’s full essay at the New York Times website.

Valerie’s own Fairytale Trilogy features dragons, sorcerers, and fairies, but at its heart is a young woman whose struggles with relationships, deceit, and responsibility are not so different from our own. The Fairytale Trilogy, perfect for young adult readers, is available from NewSouth Books,, or your favorite retail or online bookseller.

Two upcoming Fairytale Trilogy events with Valerie Gribben

Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011 by Sam Robards

The Fairytale Trilogy by Valerie Gribben

NewSouth is pleased to announce two upcoming events celebrating the release of Valerie Gribben’s newest novel The Fairytale Trilogy.

On her Fairytale Market blog, Valerie says that she has a special surprise for the first ten people who buy her book: they’ll get a copy of her first novel, Fairytale, for free!

As Valerie writes on her blog:

Valerie Gribben, a UAB medical student and author, signs copies of her latest novel, The Fairytale Trilogy, which chronicle the adventures of Marianne and her brother Robin as they come of age in an enchanted land where frogs talk, fantastical creatures prowl, and danger doesn’t stop at the edge of a dark forest.

Friday, February 25 from 5-8 PM at the Little Professor Bookstore in Birmingham. Details: 205-870-7461,, or

Saturday, February 26 from 2-4 PM at Capitol Book and News in Montgomery. Details: 334-265-1473,, or

The Fairytale Trilogy is available from NewSouth Books, or your favorite retail or online bookseller.

Valerie Gribben spotlights great fairytale picks

Friday, December 10th, 2010 by Brian Seidman

The Fairytale Trilogy by Valerie GribbenIf you’re excited about fairytales, you’re not alone. Valerie Gribben, author of the aptly-named Fairytale Trilogy, recently spotlighted five reasons fairytales were big news in the month of November on her Fairytale Market blog.

Among Valerie’s top picks for fairytale fans are Tangled, the new Disney remake of the classic Rapunzel story; My Mother She Killed Me, My Father He Ate Me, a collection of Brothers Grimm stories re-imagined by today’s top authors; and Once Upon a Time, a modern take on fairytales airing next year from ABC.

Not to be overlooked, Valerie includes her own addition to the fantasy genre, The Fairytale Trilogy, in which “Marianne and her brother Robin … come of age in an enchanted land where frogs talk, fantastical creatures prowl, and danger doesn’t stop at the edge of a dark forest.” Though steeped in the tradition of classic fairy tales, The Fairytale Trilogy presents an engagingly fresh story with what Southern Living calls “a modern twist.”

The Fairytale Trilogy is forthcoming in hardcover and ebook from NewSouth Books, Amazon, or your favorite local or online book retailer.

Fairytale Author Valerie Gribben Combines Reading and Healing

Thursday, October 25th, 2007 by Suzanne La Rosa

When UAB medical student Valerie Gribben discovered in her sophmore year that her mother had breast cancer, she spent hours reading aloud to her from The Emperor’s Realm (the sequel to Fairytale, due out from NewSouth Books in fall 2008) to distract her from the discomfort of chemotherapy and concerns about her health. In so doing, Gribben realized the idea for Healing Words, a program in which students with a wide range of majors read to patients at local Birmingham hospitals, pediatric medical facilities, and nursing homes.

Healing Words grew quickly, with over 150 student volunteers participating today. The Alabama Literacy Council is a major supporter. It donates books for the cause and also offers a training session to incoming volunteers. Says Gribben, “I have long known that reading stirs the imagination. It took only my mother’s illness to help me understand the value of the human voice and literature to the healing process.”

Learn more about Healing Words at their website,

Junebug Books Author Valerie Gribben Honored by USA Today

Monday, May 14th, 2007 by Brian Seidman

Valerie Gribben, author of Fairytale from Junebug Books, has been selected for the USA Today 2007 All-USA College Academic First Team. The USA Today Team ranks the top twenty college students in the United State; Gribben is the only student in Alabama named to this year’s First Team.

In 2003, Junebug Books published Gribben’s Fairytale, a coming-of-age story that deftly combines traditional fairytale elements with a modern sensibility. Two more Fairytale books are forthcoming from Junebug. Gribben is also the founder of “Healing Words,” a volunteer reading program; she will attend medical school at the University of Alabama at Birmingham next year.

Learn more about Fairytale at