It’s been almost a year since eighteen-year-old Ella Rodriguez was in a car accident that left her crippled, scarred, and without a mother. After a very difficult recovery, she’s been uprooted across the country and forced into the custody of a father that abandoned her when she was a young child. If Ella wants to escape her father’s home and her awful new stepfamily, she must convince her doctors that she’s capable, both physically and emotionally, of living on her own. The problem is, she’s not ready yet. The only way she can think of to start healing is by reconnecting with the one person left in the world who’s ever meant anything to her—her anonymous Internet best friend, Cinder. … Hollywood sensation Brian Oliver has a reputation for being trouble. There’s major buzz around his performance in his upcoming film The Druid Prince, but his management team says he won’t make the transition from teen heartthrob to serious A-list actor unless he can prove he’s left his wild days behind and become a mature adult. In order to douse the flames on Brian’s bad-boy reputation, his management stages a fake engagement for him to his co-star Kaylee. Brian isn’t thrilled with the arrangement—or his fake fiancée—but decides he’ll suffer through it if it means he’ll get an Oscar nomination. Then a surprise email from an old Internet friend changes everything.
A Cinderella retelling by Kelly Oram sounded like it would be amazing, as I both love retellings and am a huge fan of the author. It turned out to be just as great as I hoped it would be!
The main character, Ella, was instantly likable and easy to sympathize with. The novel starts out with her having had to move to L.A and live with her estranged father and his new family following the aftermath of a terrible accident. I thought the way she handled this situation was very mature, because while still upset, she was never overly whiny about her circumstances. The way she handled everything was admirable.
One thing that I found to be an especially unique touch was the fact that every character had depth, even the traditionally evil ones. The stepsisters and stepmother had more to them than just being pure evil, and every character had their own faults, which added more realism to this novel.
As always is the case with Kelly’s books, this one had a touch of humor! It definitely had a more serious tone at certain points, but there were plenty of hilarious moments to balance it out. Cinder & Ella’s banter definitely creates a lot of those ;)
I thought both characters had a great voice, and I was rooting for them both the entire time. The background to their relationship was adorable and they were hilarious together.
Cinder & Ella is a retelling that I’d highly recommend! The author adds depth to every character in the story, and still manages to include several lighthearted, hilarious moments. I’d give Cinder & Ella 4 out of 5 flowers.
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