Focusing on Emma Donoghue’s fairy-tale retellings for young readers, this article explores the implications of stories that stray from the conventional script of children’s literature by rejecting normative models of belonging as well as happily-ever-after permanence. Instead of securely positioning the child on the path toward reproductive futurism and the creation of a new family home, these tales present radical visions of queer futurity and kinship and upend normative child-adult relations. Drawing in particular on Sara Ahmed’s work on happiness and Judith (Jack) Halberstam’s analysis of queer time, this article analyzes how Donoghue’s versions of “Cinderella” and “Hansel and Gretel” unhome their protagonists and cast them outside of heteronormative temporality.

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