Trollbridge: A Rock’N’Roll Fairy Tale
Jane Yolen

Trolls, a boy band, one magical fiddle and 12 dairy princesses are thrown together to make Trollbridge: A Rock’N’Roll Fairy Tale. It’s not exactly “Cinderella”, but the action and suspense put you on the edge of your seat up until the “Happily Ever After” ending. The story is shared from two sides: that of Moira, the harpist and current dairy princess; and Jakob, serious guitarist and boy band member. The story takes place in a land called Trollholm, during present day.

Upon the Trollholm bridge, the 11 dairy princesses were getting their picture taken when a huge wave crashes over them. Moira jumps in to rescue her friends and the photographer, when she notices that the wave is not water but a monster. Moria is taken to the land of Trollholm with all of the 11 other dairy princesses by this monster, a troll named Aenmarr. A fox named Foss rescues Moria from Aenmarr and promises to help the dairy princesses escape from becoming the troll’s wife. In exchange for Foss' help, Moria must help Foss to get his fiddle back from Aenmarr.

Here enters Jakob and his two brothers. Out on a pleasure drive, they come upon the Trollholm bridge and are also taken prisoner by the great Aenmarr. Foss once again comes to the rescue and assists Jakob in his escape from Aenmarr’s wife Botvi. Foss directs Jakob to the house where Moira is hiding and Erik is about to be eaten. Once Moira escapes with Erik and Foss, they find Jakob and hatch out a plan to rescue the princesses and get Foss’s fiddle. The plan works; the trolls are softened by the music, Aenmarr is turned to stone and the other brother Galen is found unharmed.

The story doesn’t end there, for Foss turns out to be not as helpful as he had seemed. He uses Jakob and Moira’s musical talents to transform him from a fox back into human form. Jakob and Moira gain the efforts of the trolls in singing off pitch to destroy Foss’s plan. The princesses awake from their slumber and all the humans go back to civilization and, supposedly, live happily ever after.

Music has always played a big part in my own life, which made the musical jokes and cynical comments easy to relate to. There were times in adolescence when my bravery was called upon to help my friends and face the monsters. This story took the struggles of childhood and added a coating of fantasy for the entertainment of young minds. The story of Moira, Jakob and their friends tells one of endurance and optimism. These character traits are very important in our world today and, combined with trolls and talking foxes, make this story not only fun to read, but also a learning experience in life circumstances. - KP