“There are many different folk tales in the world, but many tales are variations on a limited number of themes. The classification system originally designed by Aarne, and later revised first by Thompson and later by Uther, is intended to bring out the similarities between tales by grouping variants of the same tale under the same ATU category.”
This is a great tool to use as you are looking for all kinds of folk tales and fairy tales! You can use this yourself, or as a very handy Reader’s Advisory tool.
And if you like such genres, you can see it applied in an entirely fiction setting in the Seanan McGuire Indexing series! Fairy tales come to life, in dark and dangerous ways. I looove both of these books, and am anxiously waiting for a third! (I have them in audio format from Audible.com, and suggest that format; but electronic book or paper would be fine if they are more accessible.)
Indexing, by Seanan McGuire
“For most people, the story of their lives is just that: the accumulation of time, encounters, and actions into a cohesive whole. But for an unfortunate few, that day-to-day existence is affected—perhaps infected is a better word—by memetic incursion: where fairy tale narratives become reality, often with disastrous results.
That’s where the ATI Management Bureau steps in, an organization tasked with protecting the world from fairy tales, even while most of their agents are struggling to keep their own fantastic archetypes from taking over their lives. When you’re dealing with storybook narratives in the real world, it doesn’t matter if you’re Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, or the Wicked Queen: no one gets a happily ever after.”
Indexing: Reflections, by Seanan McGuire
“The struggle against not-so-charming storybook narratives isn’t the only complicating factor in Henrietta “Henry” Marchen’s life. As part of the ATI Management Bureau team protecting the world from fairy tales gone awry, she’s juggling her unwanted new status as a Snow White, dealing with a potentially dangerous Pied Piper, and wrangling a most troublesome wicked stepsister—along with a budding relationship with Jeff, her teammate.
But when a twisted, vicious Cinderella breaks out of prison and wreaks havoc, things go from disenchanted to deadly. And once Henry realizes someone is trying to use her to destroy the world, her story becomes far from over—and this one might not have a happily ever after.”