written by Margaret Peterson Haddix
With all the retellings of Cinderella out there, it's really hard to decide which are worth the read. I'd stop the search right now and read Just Ella. While the original story is retold, it is more of a sequel. I love the twist on it--what if Cinderella's brand new life was worse than her old conditions? If Prince Charming was a bore, and being ladylike just wasn't worth it? Not much seems to happen plotwise in this story, but the idea is pretty amazing. I think Haddix would have ended up with a better story if it was a short story or something to that effect, but it still is a very entertaining read. It both put a feminist spin on it all, and retained its own fairy tale roots (although, no 'happily ever after', actually, I was kind of hoping it would end with those words.) I'm disappointed that there isn't a sequel/there wasn't more to the story, but I'm looking forward to the companion book!