Author: Melissa Lemon
Publisher: Bonneville Books
Release Date: November 1, 2011
Extras: Teasers & Trailer, Website
Buy at: Amazon
After their father’s disappearance, Cinder leaves home for a servant job at the castle. But it isn’t long before her sister Ella is brought to the castle herself—the most dangerous place in all the kingdom for both her and Cinder. Cinder and Ella is a Cinderella story like no other and one you'll never forget.
The cover with tree is perfect for the book. You will understand the reason behind the tree, and why it is important to the story.
This book wasn’t what I was expecting for a retelling of Cinderella. I was expecting one main character, a lovely prince, and a wicked stepmother. Instead, there was a new plot of the story, with a whole new set of characters. I actually love this story more than the Disney’s Cinderella.
In the story, the prince isn’t charming. He is handsome, but there is only evil within and his evil is spreading throughout the kingdom. His evil spreads all the way out to Cinder’s and Ella’s family home, and this evil overcame their father. The father has become obsessed and disappears without a trace, leaving behind his wife and four daughters. The mother has become obsessed with spinning yarn and, doesn’t pay any attention to the girls unless they’re bothering her.
Cinder, the second oldest, is now taking care of the other sisters. She is caring, and is there to support every sister. Katrina, the oldest, is spoiled and gets everything she wants. Beatrice, the youngest, is also spoiled and treated like a child; she hardly can do anything by herself. Ella is the loner of the family. She spends time with Cinder but, she thinks a lot about her father and thinks he’s still alive. After a trip to the shoe shop, their mother calls Cinder by Cinderella, combining the two girls name and has forgotten about Ella.
After Cinder takes a job in the castle, Ella is supposed to take care of the family. But after feeling so unwelcome there, she leaves the family. Cinder comes back home to visit and finds Ella gone. She is overcome by grief and is left wondering what happened to her sister. The prince has taken in interest in her and sends three people to search for Ella. A knight named Tanner, is noble and honest, and never trusted the prince because the prince is known for his evil. Tanner finds Ella but doesn’t want to take her back without finding what the prince wants. This prince has a lot of secrets and some of them involve Ella’s family.
The story is has a lot of point of views but they are not hard to read. This was actually a very easy read, and I quite enjoyed it. I love this dark fantasy Cinderella compared to the others. I especially love how Cinderella was split into two characters, one caring and responsible, and the other adventurous and witty. The only problem I had was the ending; I wanted to know more about the prince and left with only questions.
Ella was my favorite character. She made me laugh and smile so many times, especially when she was around Tanner. This reminds me, I also love Tanner. He was the perfect knight in shining armor.
As for the most unlikable character was the mother. She didn’t really shine in the story and was actually more unlikable than the wicked stepmother in Disney’s Cinderella.
I love how Melissa made the fantasy story around how people’s souls are connected to their own tree. In the story, after Ella’s father disappeared, his tree was still alive but slowly dying away. This still gave her hope that he was alive out there.