Thursday, September 15, 2011

CINDER AND ELLA by Melissa Lemon

Publisher: Bonneville Books, an imprint of Cedar Fort, Inc.
Date Published: November 8, 2011
ISBN: 9781599559063
Children’s, Literature & Fiction, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Teens & YA
Reviewed by Lynne
Obtained via publisher.

CINDER AND ELLA by Melissa Lemon, is an absolutely charming rendition of the classic Cinderella story.

Cinder and Ella are actually two sisters, whose father is placed under an evil spell by an evil prince. When Weston abandons his family of five, leaving them poverty-stricken and alone, Cinder has no choice but to become a servant at the king’s palace, where she becomes an exceptional worker. Kind and beautiful, she soon wins herself a reputation that does not go unnoticed by the evil prince.

Ella, meanwhile, unable to deal with the devastating effects to her family when her father leaves, soon realizes she has become an invisible member of the household. Alone and sad, she wanders off, soon finding her salvation with a happy, loving family who take her in as a servant. Quickly feeling as part of the family, she easily comes to care for them.

But, despite the growing happiness of the two sisters, Cinder and Ella, trouble begins brewing at the castle. As Cinder finds her heart stolen by the handsome prince, Ella is soon kidnapped and brought to the castle, to satisfy his whims. Only with the intervention of a knight in shining armor and a dose of white magic, do Cinder and Ella eventually find the happiness and true love they both seek, together with a fairy tale ending that is sure to satisfy.

As a fan of alI things Cinderella, I thoroughly enjoyed this story. It holds all the magic and fantasy one would expect in a fairy tale, as well as the romance and well-crafted characters that make it interesting to read. It is well written and easily kept me turning the pages. Ms. Lemon has skillfully created, with some humor, an interesting family and a superbly plotted story line, with a variety of twists and turns that continually had me guessing as to the outcome.

Cinder, while gentle, kind, and caring, falls more in line with the classic picture of Cinderella, while Ella is more strong and forceful. Yet both are quite likeable and keeps you rooting for them as they go through their many trials. And Ms. Lemon’s use of knights in this clever tale seems ingenious to me, as she is very adept at sharing the good versus evil among them.

CINDER AND ELLA contains all of the ingredients that lends sparkle to fairy tales. Unlike any other version of this beloved story, CINDER AND ELLA is unique and original in so many ways. A story filled with quaint villages, knights of honor, romance, black magic, a handsome prince, and not one, but two beautiful maidens, CINDER AND ELLA cannot help but pique one’s interest.

The wonderful creativity and originality of this story is refreshing and sure to delight people of all ages.

This is an objective review and not an endorsement of this book.

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