Cinderella Is Dead by Kalynn Bayron | Book Review

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Cinderella Is Dead by Kalynn Bayron | Book ReviewCinderella Is Dead by Kalynn Bayron
Published by Bloomsbury USA on July 7, 2020
Genres: Young Adult Fiction / Fairy Tales & Folklore / Adaptations, Young Adult Fiction / Girls & Women, Young Adult Fiction / Romance / LGBT
Pages: 400
Format: eARC, Hardcover
Source: Library, Publisher
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five-stars

"Wholly original and captivating." - Brigid Kemmerer, New York Times bestselling author of A Curse So Dark and Lonely

Girls team up to overthrow the kingdom in this unique and powerful retelling of Cinderella from a stunning new voice that's perfect for fans of A Curse So Dark and Lonely.

It's 200 years after Cinderella found her prince, but the fairy tale is over. Teen girls are now required to appear at the Annual Ball, where the men of the kingdom select wives based on a girl's display of finery. If a suitable match is not found, the girls not chosen are never heard from again.

Sixteen-year-old Sophia would much rather marry Erin, her childhood best friend, than parade in front of suitors. At the ball, Sophia makes the desperate decision to flee, and finds herself hiding in Cinderella's mausoleum. There, she meets Constance, the last known descendant of Cinderella and her step sisters. Together they vow to bring down the king once and for all--and in the process, they learn that there's more to Cinderella's story than they ever knew . . .

This fresh take on a classic story will make readers question the tales they've been told, and root for girls to break down the constructs of the world around them.

Back in the day – there was this cover trend of girls in beautiful dresses for young adult books. However, basically none of the books featured girls of color. Cinderella Is Dead by Kalynn Bayron features desperately needed representation. Also, change in cover trends, but that change still isn’t quite enough. I love that there is a Black girl on the cover in a stunning dress wearing her natural hair. How wonderful that teenage Black girls who like to read fantasy will get to see themselves in this fairytale re-working. I just genuinely loved this book so much.

Set two hundred years after Cinderella infamously meets Prince Charming at a ball and falls in love, Cinderella Is Dead follows Sophia, a teenage girl who isn’t interested in finding a prince. In fact, Sophia has feelings for her best friend Erin. Unfortunately, the town of Lille in the kingdom of Mersailles, keeps women and girls subjugated. King Marchant is a royal jerk. Girls must attend the ball to be chosen by a man who will then marry them. The girl then goes under the control of the man who is the head of the household. Sophia chafes against this. So much so that she runs away from the ball and happens to run into Constance, a descendent of one of Cinderella’s stepsisters.

As it turns out, perhaps the story Sophia has heard all her life about Cinderella is wrong. So, together, Sophia and Constance must find answers. Also, they need to take down King Marchant. Along the way Sophia and Constance fall in love. Revolution and overthrow are imminent.

Cinderella Is Dead captivated me. I can see why this book trended on booktok. Sophia is a character that kind of frustrated me at first because I am old and compliant. And I really had to deconstruct why I found myself frustrated with her. But then, I started to see her boldness as an asset. I think another part is that I was so worried for her and nervous that she’d end up really getting hurt. Y’all, I was so invested. I wanted Sophia to win so bad. I found the storyline to be really satisfying. Again, I think I was frustrated too because I was so invested. Also — I loved Sophia with Constance over her with Erin. It just made sense. This book was a great fit for me personally and I cannot wait to read more from Bayron. Love to see the representation too!


five-stars
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April is in her 30s and created Good Books And Good Wine. She works for a non-profit. April always has a book on hand. In her free time she can be found binge watching The Office with her husband and toddler, spending way too much time on Pinterest or exploring her neighborhood.
About April (Books&Wine)

April is in her 30s and created Good Books And Good Wine. She works for a non-profit. April always has a book on hand. In her free time she can be found binge watching The Office with her husband and toddler, spending way too much time on Pinterest or exploring her neighborhood.

Comments

  1. So happy you enjoyed this one, and I didn’t know it was a hot book on tiktok!

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