The first one is called "Grump: The Mostly True Story of Snow White and the Seven Dwarves". It's by Liesl Shurtliff, who has written three other mostly true fairy tales- "Rump: The Mostly True Story of Rumpelstiltskin", "Jack: The Mostly True Story of Jack and the Beanstalk" and "Red: the Mostly True Story of Little Red Riding Hood". The first three were terrific so I was really looking forward to this one and it did not disappoint. Grump is a dwarf who doesn't fit in. He really wants to go to the surface in spite of dire warnings of danger. When he's sent out on his first work mission, he ends up with an opportunity to go to the surface, he takes it and finds the surface is as wonderful as he thought, but it turns out that humans aren't always as truthful as dwarves. He connects with the Evil Queen (who is exactly as promised) and with Snow White (who isn't exactly what you'd expect) and as the story unfolds, Grump makes some hard decisions and there's the lovely happy ending. This one would be a great addition to an library where there are elementary readers. It would also make a great mentor text when talking about genre. I know my students are going to love this one as much as they've loved the other three!
The second one is actually a translation of a book that was originally published in Holland in 1962. It's called "The Letter for the King" by Tonke Dragt. It was translated by Laura Wilkinson. It's about a boy named Tiuri who is getting ready to become a knight. There's been arduous training, difficult lessons, and the last thing is he has to spend the night praying and meditating with out saying anything to anyone, locked in a chapel with his fellow initiates. Except that as they are praying, there's a knock at the door and an urgent whisper that he must come immediately. So Tiuri goes and ends up an epic quest to get a letter to the King. It's a very good story with lots of plot twists and interesting characters. The characters have complicated names and there are a lot of them, which might be a bit off putting to some readers. But it's a thrilling adventure with lots of danger, so it's worth the effort. Look for this old fashioned adventure story!