6.2.2014 | Monday

Cinderella’s Dress

category: Book Reviews

Cinderella’s Dresstitle: Cinderella's Dress
author: Shonna Slayton
series: Shonna Slayton
published: 3 June 2014
publisher: Amaretto Press
genre(s): fantasy, historical, romance
pages: 340
source: publisher
format: eARC
buy/shelve it: Amazon | B&N | BookBub | Goodreads

rating: three-half-stars | series rating: four-stars

the blurb

Being seventeen during World War II is tough. Finding out you’re the next keeper of the real Cinderella’s dresses 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 trunk they claim holds the Cinderella’s dresses, life gets complicated.

Now, with a father missing in action, her new sweetheart, Johnny, stuck in the middle of battle, 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.

my review

When I received Cinderella’s Dress, I imagined a fairy tale,  WWII-style.  I assumed that the protagonist Kate was going to be a more modern-day Cinderella.  The blurb for it called Kate “the next keeper of the dress” but I guess I thought that was another way of creating a new kind of Cinderella in Kate.  This was not the case.

I’ve ended up with mixed feelings about this book.  I enjoyed the story, enjoyed the characters, but I ended it feeling as if there was still so much I didn’t know.  The details of the era were there, however, and I truly appreciated that.  There was a mention of Dior and the New Look, which I loved since I took a history class a few years ago on fashion and US History.  Much of this book talked about fashion and clothes.  I also loved Kate’s great-aunt and great-uncle, although this is probably entirely a personal thing.  I was a Polish linguist in the Army so I loved the interspersed Polish phrases and culture.

Honestly, I think the only true issue I had with this book was the vagueness that seemed to exist around the dresses.  I wanted to know more about what their importance was, why Kate’s family had been entrusted with them, the slippers, the purpose of Kate’s necklace.  I also think that I went into the book with a more fantasy, fairy tale mindset.  And this book was really more historical fiction/romance with a fantasy element.  It is a book that I am going to reread at some point with a more focused mindset, because I think it really has the potential to be great.

Things to love…

  • Johnny Day.  A bit arrogant at times, but truly a good guy who makes a perfect book boyfriend.
  • Floyd.  Kate’s brother has a lot of loyalty and honor.

Things I wanted more/less of…

  • More information.  I wanted to know more about the dress and the story around them.  This, after all, was the focus of the book.

Read this with a mind more towards historical fiction, rather than fantasy.  It’s a fun read with an interesting premise.

About Shonna Slayton

SHONNA SLAYTON is the author of the Fairy-Tale Inheritance Series of young adult novels, beginning with Cinderella’s Dress.

She edited curriculum for an education company before homeschooling her own children using literature-based whole book learning. She’s taught writing using fairy tales in school classrooms and workshops, as well as in public libraries as a writer in residence. Instead of seeing her in person, you can get the Lessons from Grimm Series which includes a writer’s guide and workbooks for writers to learn fiction techniques through fairy tales.

Rating Report
Overall: three-stars

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