Cinder Edna

( 6 )

Overview

The famous Cinderella and her neighbor Cinder Edna each worked sunup to sundown for their wicked stepmother and stepsisters. But while Cinderella had the good fortune to be rescued by her fairy godmother, Edna was strong, self-reliant, spunky—and she lived happier ever after! "Nicely executed....This Cinderella send-up is full of kid-pleasing jokes."—Publisher's Weekly.

Author Biography:

ELLEN JACKSON was born and raised in southern California....

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Overview

The famous Cinderella and her neighbor Cinder Edna each worked sunup to sundown for their wicked stepmother and stepsisters. But while Cinderella had the good fortune to be rescued by her fairy godmother, Edna was strong, self-reliant, spunky—and she lived happier ever after! "Nicely executed....This Cinderella send-up is full of kid-pleasing jokes."—Publisher's Weekly.

Author Biography:

ELLEN JACKSON was born and raised in southern California. As a teenager, she always wished her feet were small and delicate, and tried to cram them into shoes that were several sizes too small. Later, when she read the story of Cinderella to her kindergarten classes, she wondered how anyone could run in glass slippers, much less dance in them.

Now the author of several books for children, Ellen lives in Santa Barbara, California, where she has gladly forgotten the recipes for dozens of ways to make tuna casserole.

Cinderella and Cinder Edna, who live with cruel stepmothers and stepsisters, have different approaches to life; and, although each ends up with the prince of her dreams, one is a great deal happier than the other.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
According to Jackson, the famous Cinderella (here cast as a feckless modern suburbanite) has a neighbor, Cinder Edna. Each does household chores for a nasty stepmother and stepsisters, but while dainty Ella plays the martyr, uncomplaining Edna learns some practical skills (``such as how to make tuna casserole sixteen different ways''). On the night of the ball, as the fairy godmother alights next door, Edna, who ``didn't believe in fairy godmothers,'' dons a dress she has bought on layaway and comfortable penny loafers, and hops the bus to the palace. There she jitterbugs with the prince's Rick Moranis-esque brother Rupert (a virtual poster boy for liberal causes, Rupert ``runs the recycling plant and a home for orphaned kittens''). The other Cindy only sways to the music (``She was afraid of mussing her hair, and she knew those fragile glass slippers would break if she danced too hard''), and the crown prince is vain and dull. O'Malley's ( Bruno, You're Late for School! ) nicely executed, cleverly detailed spreads contrast Cinderella's fantasy glow with Edna's clear-eyed, can-do attitude. This Cinderella send-up is full of kid-pleasing jokes and, besides, it's never too early to discover the hazards of codependence. Ages 4-up. (Apr.)
Children's Literature - Susie Wilde
Cinderella, the fairy tale with the greatest number of versions, has a new incarnation in this book. Cinder Edna is Cinderella's next door neighbor. This strong resourceful girl doesn't believe in a fairy godmother, has earned money to put a dress on layaway, and knows her comfortable loafers are great for dancing. In a double ceremony she marries the prince's younger brother Rupert, laughs, jokes and plays duets on the accordion and concertina and lives more happily ever after than her beautiful, but bored neighbor, Cinderella.
School Library Journal
K-Gr 3-This clever, double story follows the fates of two young women. Readers know Cinderella, who works all day, sits in the cinders, and needs her fairy godmother to get the ball moving. But Cinder Edna next door has used her spare time to learn 16 different ways to make tuna casserole and to play the accordian. She earns money by cleaning out parrot cages and mowing lawns, and can she tell jokes. When the dance is announced, she dons the dress she bought on layaway, takes the bus to the ball, and wears loafers for dancing. She wins the attention of Prince Randolph's younger but dorky brother, Rupert, who loves to dance and tell jokes, and runs the palace recycling plant. Both women dash off at the stroke of midnight. The two princes' plans for finding the owners of the lost glass slipper and the beat-up loafer are a hilarious contrast. Ella ends up, of course, with the vain, boorish Randolph. Edna moves into a solar-heated cottage, caring for orphaned kittens and playing duets with her husband Rupert. O'Malley's full-page, full-color illustrations are exuberant and funny. Ella is suitably bubble-headed and self-absorbed while Edna is plain, practical, and bound to enjoy life. Kids will love this version of the familiar story for its humor and vibrant artwork. Buy two copies-one to circulate and the other to hoard for story hours.-Susan Hepler, Alexandria City Public Schools, VA
Hazel Rochman
In a modern feminist version of "Cinderella", the strident message overwhelms the magic, but, fortunately, humor softens the commentary. Two stories are told side by side. The traditional passive Cinderella is the neighbor of liberated Cinder Edna. Cinderella is weak and victimized, and she needs a fairy godmother to get her to the ball. Cinder Edna also has a hard time at home, but instead of moping in the cinders, she earns money mowing lawns and cleaning parrot cages. She's not beautiful, but she's strong and spunky and funny. She wears comfortable loafers to the ball--and she takes the bus. What's more, the prince is boring; it's his younger brother, Rupert, who attracts Cinder Edna. They dance and boogie all night; they swap jokes and recipes; they talk about waste disposal and ecology. O'Malley's contemporary comic illustrations extend the parody and exaggeration. Stiff dumb-blonde Cinderella and her smirking prince are shown in their dull public roles. In contrast, the uninhibited Cinder Edna and her boyfriend (who looks a lot like Woody Allen) live happily ever after in their solar-heated cottage with a bunch of orphaned cats. There's fun in the literal reduction of the fantasy as well as in the transformed role models.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780688123222
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 4/28/1994
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 700,004
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.50 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 0.32 (d)

Meet the Author

ELLEN JACKSON was born and raised in southern California. As a teenager, she always wished her feet were small and delicate, and tried to cram them into shoes that were several sizes too small. Later, when she read the story of Cinderella to her kindergarten classes, she wondered how anyone could run in glass slippers, much less dance in them.

Now the author of several books for children, Ellen lives in Santa Barbara, California, where she has gladly forgotten the recipes for dozens of ways to make tuna casserole.

Kevin O'Malley has illustrated many entertaining books for children, including Too Many Kangaroo Things to Do! By Stuart J. Murphy, Cinder Edna by Ellen Jackson, and his own Carl Caught a Flying Fish.

Kevin O'Malley lives in Baltimore, Maryland.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 6 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 2, 2013

    Now that my cousins have daughters I'm always on the lookout for

    Now that my cousins have daughters I'm always on the lookout for books that challenge the norms of girls and princesses an being pretty, pink, and marrying a prince. This is an excellent example of what I look for, even though she does marry a prince. I just can't say enough good things about this book, it's funny, smart, and wonderfully made. The story is fantastic, the artwork is amusing and well done. When ever I run across a girl in need of a book, this will be in the top 2 stories I hand her.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 19, 2008

    A realistic Fairy tale

    I LOVED this book. Classical fairy tales are cute, but sometimes they seem to be one demensional. This is not the case with Cinder Edna, Cinderella's neighbor who has the same problems the poor princess does, but approaches them by taking care of them herself. There is a happy ending and happily ever after, but no one helps Cinder Edna get there...she does it all on her own.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 2, 2003

    A Fairy Tale for the 21st century!

    My 5 year old daughter and I love this book! The author did a great job showing how life is what you make of it! I also liked how the story depicted common interests and values over perfect beauty!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 20, 2003

    A New Twist

    My family and I thoroughly enjoyed this tale. It proved that everyone can live the fairy tale. In real life you need to put a little effort in to achieve your dream. Sometimes the dream comes when you're not even looking for it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 20, 2002

    Great Book To Read!

    I like this Cinderella book because it's very funny and it's like the real Cinderella story. It was very cool and has great pictures.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 5, 2002

    Very Witty!!

    I thoroughly enjoyed Cinder Edna! It was great to read about someone who see's the glass half full instead of half empty. My sisters and I all loved it. It was more realistic to how life really happens than is Cinderella.

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