This series is heavily inspired by fairy/folk tales – Source tales are in parenthesis after the book title. Fairy tale names are linked to SurLaLune: SurLaLune Fairy Tales features 49 annotated fairy tales, including their histories, similar tales across cultures, modern interpretations and over 1,500 illustrations.
- Through the Woods (gender-swapped “Little Red Riding Hood“)
- Out of the Ashes (first half of “The Wonderful Birch“)
- From Bone and Skin (second half of “The Wonderful Birch” combined with “The Ugly Duckling“)
- Beyond Her Dreams (“Sleeping Beauty“)
- The Shark and the Axe (“King Thrushbeard“)
- Without a Voice (“East of the Sun, West of the Moon” combined with “Snow White and Rose Red“)
CW, possible spoilers.
The Beneath the Birch Tree Saga contains adult themes. Although there is no swearing and no explicit sex, the series does contain implied sex, mentions of seeing or watching people having sex, and some mentions of prostitution and concubines (thralls/slaves), but they are not graphic scenes. There are some scenes of unwanted sexual contact (hand-holding, hugging, and kissing).
There is a recurring theme of toxic parenting, and an abusive parent (the stepmother/witch character) — her primary form of abuse is psychological/emotional, with some physical abuse.
It’s a warrior society so there is some violence implied/shown in the form of swordfighting and similar. As it’s also a farming society, there is mention of killing animals for food. None of this violence is gratuitous or graphic.
There is one instance of animal abuse (yes, the dog dies) in Out of the Ashes, but it is not overly graphic, and it is contextual.