Genre: YA fairy tale
Length: 232 pages
Setting: Frell, preindustrial age
Interest: It was recommended as a good book for young girls, so I’ve been reading it to Miss Adventure before bed most nights.
Summary: Ella was given a blessing by the fairy Lucinda at her birth that turned into a curse – obedience to any direct command. She manages to live a happy life with her mother and her fairy godmother, Mandy, who is also the cook. When Ella’s mother dies, he life becomes much more difficult. Her father isn’t interested in raising a child, so he sends her to finishing school with Dame Olga’s nasty daughters, Hattie and Olive. While there, her curse becomes more problematic, especially when Hattie learns she can order Ella around. Ella runs away one night to find Lucinda and ask for the blessing to be removed. She has several adventures along the way and makes a good impression on Prince Charmont, but doesn’t get the blessing removed. Ella’s life becomes even harder when her father marries Dame Olga and Ella is ordered to work around the house. Ella breaks off her friendship with Prince Charmont that is rapidly growing into something more in order to protect the prince and the nation. It is only when the Prince is threatened that she is able to break her curse.
Final thoughts: An excellent book that lived up to my expectations – good to read to a young girl (or boy, since Mr. Curiosity liked to listen in as well). Ella is a realistic girl who provides a good role model as she demonstrates good decision-making when she’s put in difficult situations. Since it’s told by Ella, we can see her struggles with her curse and her attempts to break it. You definitely get more out of the book if you know the traditional Cinderella story, especially towards the end of the book when we are introduced to the evil stepmother and stepsisters. Especially towards the end, the kids were begging me to read just a little more, which is always a good sign for an evening read aloud.
Title comes from: Ella is the narrator of the story and she was given a fairy blessing at birth that made her enchanted.
Reading challenges fulfilled: 83/100 in the Read-a-Latte Challenge, and an L in my A-Z Reading Challenge author challenge (12/26)
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