Tuesday, June 10, 2014
REVIEW: Cinderella’s Dress
Author: Shonna Slayton
Publisher: Entangled Publishing (Entangled Teen)
Publication date: 6.3.2014
Genre: Historical Fiction
Date read: 6.9.2014
Recommended by: Read 2 Review
Being seventeen during World War II is tough. Finding out you're the next keeper of the real Cinderella's dress is even tougher.
Kate simply wants to create window displays at the department store where she's working, trying to help out with the war effort. But when long-lost relatives from Poland arrive with a steamer truck they claim holds the Cinderella's dress, life gets complicated.
Now, with a father missing in action, her new sweetheart shipped off to boot camp, and her great aunt losing her wits, Kate has to unravel the mystery before it's too late.
After all, the descendants of the wicked stepsisters will stop at nothing to get what they think they deserve.
I love historical fiction - there is just something amazing about reading stories based in a time before I was born. I am not, however, a fan of romance, but … mixed in with historical fiction, it has its place … and I actually enjoy it. This book – not just historical fiction, not just a clean romance, but Cinderella. You mention Cinderella (or any of the other fairy tales that I love) and I.am.THERE – I am always amazed at the stories that people come up with based on the old classics.
Have you ever wondered what the rest of Cinderella's story was? What happened to her children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren…? Where her dress is now? That is what this story is about – and so much more. World War II, family, friends, teen love, window designs, modeling and fashion – it was so much to read.
This story was beautiful. The characters were ones that you wanted to know more about, that you grew close to, that you cheered for when they did good, worried about when they were harmed, hoped the best for when they were in trouble (fingers crossed and all).
I want to know more and, with the way that the story ended – and the fact that there are some things that happened in the story that never came to a conclusion – I really hope there is going to be a second book. The story only barely touched on the father's disappearance, Cinderella's step-sisters and the necklace, Kate's brother is still overseas. I look forward to what comes next.
I loved this book enough to give it a 5, but chose to give it a 4 because of one big thing that I noticed but, after skimming other reviews, it seems to me that I am the only one who noticed. When Kate's aunt began telling her the story of the dress, she did not know the English translation of Cinderella's name. Even though the person reading the story knew it was Cinderella (based on the name of the book and the description), Kate did not. Yet, in the book, it is referred to as Cinderella's dress (16% "Kate leaned forward, eager for a look. She held her breath, wondering what the Cinderella dress would look like.") long before the translation was remembered by Elsie (21%"A young girl made to be servant, shoveling out cinders for her stepmother. Then she escapes to ball where she meets prince of the land. I found her English name. You call her Cinderella."). This may not seem like a big deal to you, but to me it is HUGE. It gives away the story. I, as a reader, was anticipating this conversation between Kate and Elsie, and when the conversation finally happened, it didn't have as much strength as it could have – as it should have.
On a side note, I also feel like the book description gave away too much and, at the same time, gave away misinformation and I really don't like that. You see, when I read these (which is why I usually skim them or don't read them at all) and you tell specific things that are going to happen, instead of enjoying the build up to the story, I … wait for those things to happen. And in this one, one of the things that it says – "her new sweetheart is shipped off to boot camp" – is untrue. They are not sweethearts. She is interested in him and there's a possibility that he is interested in her, they write letters back and forth, but there is no anything really, other than friendship, until the end of the story. (Sorry that I gave this away for those of you reading this, but it was given away already.) Also, the disappearance of her father – why did that have to be shared in the description? I mean, I know you want to get people interested, but the disappearance would have had a lot more impact – just as Aunt Elsie "losing her wits" – if it had been left out of the book description so that the reader could find this out on their own as the story progressed.