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Hans Christian Andersen
Reading's great when you can't sleep. However more challenging stories than HCA ones might induce sleep faster. These are heartily entertaining, here are a few quotes:

The Tinderbox

'"What are you going to do with that tinderbox", the soldier asked?
"None of your business", the witch replied...
..."Don't be silly", the soldier said, "tell me right now... or I'll pull out my sword and cut off your head".
"I won't", the witch said
So the soldier chopped off her head and there she lay'

'The biggest dog took [the king] and the queen and threw them into the air ('so that when they fell down they broke into pieces'). The soldiers were terrified and all the people shouted "little soldier we want you to be our king and marry our beautiful princess"... the princess came out of the copper castle and became queen, which she liked very much.'

Little Claus and Big Claus

'The husband was a good man, but he had a strange disease: he could not stand the sight of deacons.'

The princess and the pea... why would anybody want to marry someone that sensitive? They couldn't even take a drink without hurting themselves.

'Thumbelisa didn't want to marry the neighbour because the neighbour was a mole.'

'The little prince asked her name and if she wanted to be his wife.'


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