The Cottage in the Woods - Katherine Coville
In two words: absolutely phenomenal.

In more than two words:

The book opens with Ursula, a she-bear, introducing her story of her time as a governess at The Cottage. From the get-go it has a very "Jane Eyre" feel. But it's so, so much more. Yes, the Bronte-like tone carries throughout the book, but the story is very, very much its own. (Even as a Goldilocks retelling.)

Characters from other stories - Mother Hubbard, Peter Pumpkin Eater, among others - peep in and out of the story, giving it color and fairy-tale feel. Setting the story in Bremen was a stroke of genius on Coville's part. Of COURSE the figures of tales would live in the city with the folklore of the animal musicians.

Ursula exists in full, not just as a mouthpiece for the story. All three bears and Goldilocks are fully realized and grow in their own ways throughout. The subplots of "racial" discrimination never feel shoe-horned or out of place, and serve to give the story depth and realism.

I can't really sing this book's praises enough. Fans of Austen, Bronte, Shannon Hale, Patricia C Wrede, and Tamora Pierce should all give it a go. And everyone else too