Cinder and Ella

Cinder and Ella

by Melissa Lemon

Hardcover

$15.99
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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781599559063
Publisher: Cedar Fort, Incorporated/CFI Distribution
Publication date: 11/28/2011
Pages: 273
Product dimensions: 5.70(w) x 8.30(h) x 1.10(d)
Age Range: 10 - 13 Years

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Cinder and Ella 3.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 32 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is definately worth reading. I got it for Christmas two years ago and have read it ten times since then. Each time, some new detail that I never noticed before pops right off the page. If you love Cinderella, Cinder and Ella will soon become a loved classic tale.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Cinder and ella is scary. A great adventure for any one in a mood for a good story.
jdonnelly14 on LibraryThing 5 months ago
RECEIVED FROM: Net Galley ARC For Review***NOTE MY REVIEWS OFTEN CONTAIN SPOILERS***The Grimm Brothers and Disney had it wrong, there was no Cinderella and there certainly wasn't a Prince Charming in the tale of the sisters Cinder and Ella. Cinder and Ella come from a home broken by the evil machinations of the young Prince Monticello. When their father disappears, their mother goes into a deep depression, while their oldest sister demands everything the family has and their youngest sister behaves like a spoiled little brat. Cinder steps up to care for them all while Ella tries to ignore them, though she often helps Cinder with her errands only because she doesn't want Cinder to suffer alone. In her state of depression their mother blends the two middle girls into one within her mind, calling them Cinderella. She only recognizes Cinder upon sight and has no idea who Ella might be when faced with her. Cinder finds work at the castle leaving Ella behind to care for their family. Disheartened that her mother doesn't know who she is, Ella runs away, taking a job as a servant in a faraway village. When Cinder returns she's heartbroken to find that Ella is missing and her family doesn't even seem to notice or care. Her late night tears are heard by a castle knight who requests to find the missing Ella and return her to her sister. Unfortunately the request brings Ella back into the scope of the evil Prince who is determined not to let her slip away. Will Cinder be taken in by the Princes lies? Will Ella survive his attention? Find out in this fairy tale of love and adventure.The story of Cinder and Ella is a well written fairy tale with beautifully constructed pose. It features a distant narrator style voice as is common in the fairy tales of old. Unfortunately this sort of point of view doesn't allow you to connect to the characters in the same way that a closer third person point of view would. As a reader you find yourself outside the action watching it like it's on a television screen rather than inside the story experiencing alongside the characters. This sort of point of view is fine for younger children and possibly preteens who enjoy being told a story, however I don't feel it will appeal as much to older teens and adult readers of young adult fiction. Unfortunately, I think the length will seem daunting to the readers this story will most appeal to. Being a fairy tale the characters also don't seem to take shape as much as they would in a regular novel. They had flaws and positive attributes yes, but they didn't come to life for me or seem three dimensional. Again I feel this is because of the voice or point of view used rather than the lack of character construction.In the beginning of the story the character descriptions are a little confusing and I'll admit that I was a few chapters into the novel before I could place which physical description belonged to which character. It's easier to understand when Cinder and Ella are separate than when she's trying to describe all four of the sisters at once. The confusion though did make it a little difficult for me to really connect with the story from page one. Overall the story is extremely interesting and is completely not what you'd expect from a story spun from the fairy tale of the original Cinderella. It's not a love story where the poor abused girl is pulled from a bad family into the loving arms of Prince Charming. It's a tale of mystery and deceit, adventure and magic. It's a written example of both manipulation and cunning as well as one of a character growing and finding strength to overcome impossible odds. In the theme of fairy tales, the story is written to portray a moral lesson and even includes discussion questions at the back of the novel for classroom use. If younger readers are able to make it through the length of the novel, I think they'll highly enjoy this tale. However, reading this as an adult who enjoys young adult fiction
jwitt33 on LibraryThing 5 months ago
I received this book free of charge from NetGalley in exchange for my honest opinion.From Goodreads: "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."If you are looking for a retelling of the classic Cinderella story in this book, stop right here! You may be disappointed. If you are looking for a totally new fairy tale that just happens to have two girls with the names of Cinder and Ella, a prince, two bratty sisters, and an absent father, then please, continue reading! If you go into the reading of this story knowing the above, then I imagine you, like I, will totally enjoy Cinder and Ella!The story begins with a happy family, with a father, a mother, and 4 sisters. But things begin to change when the Prince, with malicious intent, visits the father while on a mission to turn the people of the kingdom against his father, the King, so he can take over. The father becomes obsessed with this "mission" and one day disappears, leaving the mother to try to raise the 4 girls all by herself. When the story starts, the four girls are Katrina, the eldest daughter, Cinder, the second oldest, Ella, the third daughter, and Beatrice, the youngest by 5 years. Their mother spins yarn day and night, and withdraws almost completely from the world around her. Katrina is too selfish to take over the care of her sisters - this task falls on Cinder's shoulders, as she is the most caring of the girls. Ella can be kind, but she has absolutely no patience with her older sister or the youngest, who is a bit slow and very, very needy. When Cinder gets a job at the castle, Ella tries to take over her role as helper, but she can't do it and instead leaves the house in search of work for herself. One of the reasons I loved this story is that each character is so well developed that you never mistake one for the other. The story is told in the third person, and goes from one POV to the next in such a smooth manner that you never get confused as to which person is speaking at any given time. The way in which each person speaks and acts makes it easy to go from one to the other without taking you out of the story. There are no jarring interruptions in the story, in other words. This may not be your typical Cinderella story, but it still smacks of a fairy tale! The reason that Cinder and Ella end up being Cinderella is when their mother, who is so out of it that she has trouble dealing with reality, calls for "Cinder-n-Ella" to take care of their sisters, which then turns into "Cinderella". I really love how the author draws you this picture, which you will better understand when you read the book. In summary, I really liked this book! It was a very quick read (I read it in under 24 hours) because it smoothly transitions between POVs, and it's just a really fun story! I am absolutely looking forward to hearing more about Melissa Lemon's books, and I will gladly read more of her books in the future :D
Bendingthespine on LibraryThing 5 months ago
I grew up on fairy tales and Cinderella was always one of my favorites. So when I read this would be a Cinderella tale like no other I jumped at the chance to read it. I loved this new story, it had me from beginning to end.Cinder and Ella are the middle siblings in a happy home until one night the evil, nasty, yet charming prince comes in and destroys their family. Cinder and Ella are the only ones his evil power does not change. After years of decay that the evil has spread in the family,it is up to Cinder and Ella to take care of the household, as the rest of the family are not capable.Cinder enjoys taking care of others, but she aloud it to go to a point of people walking over her. When Cinder goes to work in the castle she is too gullible and good hearted to see the princes wickedness. At times I found myself wanting to shake Cinder as she let the prince turn her away from Ella. Even though it was necessary for the story as a whole.Ella is the heartbeat of this wondrous tale. She is funny, sarcastic, and desperately misses the way her family was. After taking all she could from her family Ella left to find work. This was not fitting in the princes plans, so he sends a night out to look for her, and this is how Ella meets Sir Tanner. Sir Tanner is A Night who is clumsy around her, and tends to get a little lost, but he is charming in all the right ways. Watching their relationship grow was a joy. Together they are my favorite part of the book.I don¿t want to give too much away, but this was a great read with everything in it! From an exciting sword fight, enchanted tree¿s, amazing romance, and a great evil villain. Cinder and Ella was a fairy tale worth sharing.Happy Reading,Rebecca
NCRainstorm on LibraryThing 5 months ago
Cinder and Ella is a remake of the classic Cinderella fairy tale. This time around, there are two young women, Cinder and Ella who live with their mother who spends all her time spinning yarn, and their two sisters, who only think of themselves. Their father has left them many years before, they don't even know if he's still alive.There is no fairy godmother to help out, Cinder goes to the castle to find work as a servant where she catches the eye of the Prince. Ella runs off to find a new life as a nanny, but is brought to the castle because Cinder has been crying for her, not knowing where she has gone.This is no typical fairy tale, though there are knights, a king and queen, a prince, a castle, and damsels in distress. I liked some of the ideas in the book, such as having two sisters struggling to get out of their current lowly existence and the life tree connection. The author did a good job of capturing the tone of a fairy tale in her writing, but perhaps in detriment to the story. The romance fell flat for me and the characters seemed very one-dimensional. It definitely was not your typical fairy tale ending. Overall, this story was just ok for me.*Disclaimer: I received this book for free from NetGalley. I was not required to write a positive review.
CatheOlson on LibraryThing 5 months ago
Cinder and Ella are two of four sisters. Their older sister is a vain, demanding shrew and their younger sister is a spoiled baby who can do nothing for herself. Since their father's disappearance which seems linked to a visit from the evil prince, their mother has retreated inside herself and does nothing but spin yarn. Cinder takes care of the family, and Ella hides in her room or out at her father's willow tree. But one day, the selfless Cinder gets a job at the castle (seems she has some ambition lurking in her pure goodness) and Ella not wanting to be left with her dysfunctional family, runs off. Unfortunately, the prince has other plans for the sisters . . .While I thought the premise for this book intriguing and loved the title, I unfortunately did not like the book much. It really felt to me like it needed one more major rewrite to flesh out the characters, their problems and desires, and to pull all the plot points together. I felt like the story didn't flow -- characters and problems kept being pulled out as needed but weren't really woven into the story. Like when Ella runs away to get a job, suddenly getting an education was really important. And suddenly she's such a hard worker when before she left all that to Cinder. What was with the prince -- what was he trying to do with his evil powers? And there was no growth in any of the characters. Even the humor between Ella and Tanner felt forced and not genuinely funny. I also found the writing confusing in many places and found myself having to reread passages several times to get the meaning. I think this could be a good book . . . but wasn't quite there yet.
pocketmermaid on LibraryThing 5 months ago
I made the mistake of thinking this was going to be a retelling of "Cinderella." I've just learned a lesson to never judge a book by its title.There isn't anyone I can think of that I'd recommend this book, or for any situation I think it would be appropriate. For me, this book failed on every level. The characterizations were confusing and weak. The plot slides all over the place. The dialogue is stilted and cringe-inducing. This book is so choppy and disorganized that it reads like a first draft. The writing is just a mess. I actually took some extra time to read over sentences and paragraphs so that they might actually take shape in my brain and so that I may understand what in tarnation the author might possibly be trying to tell me. This didn't always work. Most of what happens in "Cinder & Ella" just doesn't make any sense -- and the author did nothing to try to convince me that it should.I can't really be bothered to try to summarize the plot, mostly because I think I'd be working harder than the writer did to explain what's going on. Reading a simple children's story should not be this difficult. Save yourselves!I think the people who would be enticed to read this book are the same people who would fall for the same trick I did, which was thinking it was a young adult retelling of the beloved Grimm fairy tale. There are so many other books out there that pull off that concept. Potential readers should be advised to look elsewhere.
ReadingFanatic09 on LibraryThing 5 months ago
I don't think that I would be alone if I admitted to being nervous about reading classic fairy tale retellings. It's hard to expect something entirely new and each time we open one we mentally prepare for a simple retelling that adds basic twists - a new setting (time or place), for example. However, Melissa Lemon has taken the story of Cinderella, one we all know and love, and turned it on its head. Cinder & Ella is NOT just Cinderella...it is a whole new spin on this classic fairy tale.Cinder & Ella puts a new dark twist on the fairy tale. First and foremost, we are presented with a single family--mother, father, and 4 sisters. No step-sisters or evil step-mother here. On top of that, there is no Cinderella per se; instead we have two sisters in her place - Cinder and Ella (hence the title). When the family's father disappears, things begin to fall apart. The girls' mother falls into what appears to almost be a somewhat catatonic state where she does nothing but sit at her spinning wheel and, well, spin. The oldest daughter, Katrina, and the youngest daughter, Beatrice, are virtually useless while Cinder bears the brunt of the work with help from the mild-mannered Ella.I don't want to give anything away about this one because I thought it was such a unique take on the Cinderella story! It was a much darker version of the story with interesting fantasy plot elements from the original story (i.e. the tree) woven in. If the names were different, you may not even recognize the story as Cinderella. There is love and loss and the hero-prince of the Cinderella you know is, well, clearly absent. Melissa Lemon has deftly created a dark, spell-binding tale of good and evil and of the strength of faith, family, and friends to triumph in the end.
booktwirps on LibraryThing 5 months ago
Forget the fairytale you grew up with. In this re-telling of the classic story, there are no glass slippers, fairy godmothers, swoon-worthy princes, or, if you are more familiar with the Disney version, lovable mice. In Melissa Lemon's Cinder & Ella, the beloved heroine of the classic story is split into two characters. When their father is bewitched by the evil prince and leaves the family, their mother becomes distant and preoccupied with spinning yarn, and mending garments. Cinder is forced to travel to town to buy supplies for the family, and purchase the things her spoiled, bratty sisters Katrina and Beatrice (the eldest and youngest respectively) demand of her. Ella, the fourth sister, is often overlooked and forgotten by everyone except Cinder.When Cinder takes a job working at the castle to help provide for her family, Ella goes missing. When Cinder returns home, the rest of her family doesn't even remember Ella, and merge her name with Cinder's (Cinderella). It's up to Cinder to find out what happened to her sister with the help of a gallant knight.There is a lot of potential here. The concept is interesting, I just felt it was a little disjointed. I liked the idea of the legend of the trees, which I felt could have been explained better, and the twist of the evil prince rather than the standard Prince Charming. The writing flowed well in some areas, but seemed very basic and rushed in others. I felt some scenes could use tightening and the prose could be evened out. This book isn't released until November, though, and the version I read was an uncorrected proof, so there is a possibility that the final version will be much different.(Advanced Review Copy courtesy of NetGalley & Cedar Fort Books)
l_manning on LibraryThing 5 months ago
This book takes a different approach to a very familiar story. Cinder and Ella are two different sisters with very different personalities. Their father begins to follow in the footsteps of the not-so-charming prince. He disappears and leaves Cinder and Ella with their mother and two sisters. The longer their father is gone, the worse their home life becomes. Their mother withdraws from the world, and she even merges the two girls in her head to create one "Cinderella." Their older sister becomes extremely self-involved while their younger sister becomes a brat. One day, Cinder gets a chance to escape by becoming a servant in the castle. Ella however can no longer take the miserable state of her home and runs away. Their stories then take two different directions, with evil princes and good knights leading the way. I loved the concept of people's life forces being connected to trees. Each person had a tree that represented them. The tree's health was directly related to the person's health. This made for an interesting aspect to the story. I also liked how things weren't wrapped up neatly, and people were held accountable for their choices. These added some realistic touches to a very fanciful story.The writing felt a bit uneven at times. Sometimes it read a bit stiff, but other times it seemed to fit exactly with the fairy tale style. I think this book can appeal to a number of different age groups. It certainly takes a very familiar story and turns it on it's head. It makes me wonder what other fairy tales could use a good reworking. This book can help inspire some creative minds to see things in a whole new way.Galley provided by publisher for review.
skstiles612 on LibraryThing 5 months ago
The story of Cinder and Ella is loosely based on the fairy tale Cinderella. I say loosely because it has more of a Grimms Brothers touch to it. I loved the fact that the author broke the familiar character into two different characters. We have Cinder who received her name because of the color of her hair, and we have Ella. Cinder, Ella, and their sisters Beatrice and Katrina live with their parent in a happy home. That is it was happy until the Prince paid a visit. He was trying to convince everyone that his father was evil, when in reality he was the evil one. Their father changed before their eyes and then disappeared. Their mother began spinning yarn to provide for her children. Cinder was the one who could calm everyone and make everyone happy. Ella tried to be like her but yet did not give in to selfish Katrina or Beatrice. When Cinder gets a job at the palace Ella leaves home on her own and the household become chaotic. Cinder returns on her day off to find her sister gone and no one knows or seems to care where she is. A knight hears her crying at night and decides to find her sister for her. He finds it strange when his request to search for her is granted by the Prince and only with the understanding he will take to of the Prince¿s men along with him. He learns that they are to bring her back to the castle even if they have to arrest her. We watch the feelings between the Knight Tanner and Ella grow as the danger increases. I loved the way the story continued. I loved the way it ended. It wasn¿t your fairy tale ending. It had that darkness all through it. Yet as you read the discussion questions at the back you realized there were so many deep questions about family and right from wrong throughout the book that were left for the reader to answer. This is definitely a great book and one I look forward to recommending to others. I also look forward to whatever else this author has for the future
theepicrat on LibraryThing 5 months ago
Cinderella has been retold in numerous of ways ¿ Disney, historical, musical, pop culture, ninja, assassin, ugly sister¿s perspective, masculine ¿ but here is one that claims she is actually 2 sisters named Cinder and Ella who each have their burdens to bear. Cinder has been the Atlas of the family, waiting on her sisters and mother hand and foot without complaint, while Ella has a harder time with being as patient. When Cinder leaves the family to be a castle servant, Ella tries to pick up the slack but it is obvious that her family would rather have Cinder. However, something wicked resides in the castle by the name of a supposed Prince Charming ¿ and it is up to Ella to get to the bottom of it and rescue her sister.The Cinderella fairy tale retellings seems to be gaining popularity lately ¿ and I can¿t seem to resist them as I patiently wait for Apocalypsie debut Queen Of Glass. I had a difficult time with diving into Cinder and Ella. I know that this was not supposed to have any bibbidies or bobbidies, but the story didn¿t draw me in very well. I thought it was about both Cinder and Ella ¿ but Cinder becomes more of an afterthought as Ella takes the stage. I thought there¿d be more to how they became ¿Cinderella¿ but it hardly mattered. The opening line promised a ¿corrected¿ version ¿ but as the story slowly proceeded, it seemed like a completely unrelated story that had no bearing on this age-old fairy tale.
iShanella on LibraryThing 5 months ago
Though it seems like it is, and the narrator begins the story that way, I don¿t think it¿s fair to call Cinder and Ella, by Melissa Lemon, a retelling of the Cinderella story. Sure, there is a prince, and a party, and a missing father, and horrible sisters, and Cinder; but this story isn¿t really about any of these things, it¿s really about Ella and the legend of the trees.Cinder and Ella follow the two sisters as they try to navigate life in their drama-filled household. Their father has disappeared and is assumed to be dead after speaking with the evil prince. Their mother sits in a corner all day, spinning at a wheel to make a living. Their older sister thinks her job is to primp and preen herself, while making demands of her mother for the best and newest clothing and accessories. Their youngest sister cries and generally behaves like a brat. Ella - forgotten by her mother, who merges her and Cinder¿s name together, referring to Cinder as Cinderella - is sullen and dissatisfied with her family¿s situation and holds fast to the hope that her father still lives.Cinder takes up employment at the castle, working as a servant while Ella runs away from home, distressed that she¿s left to carry out the desires of her demanding sisters. As Cinder works her way to the top, Ella find a new place to call home and all seems well until an unsuspecting knight starts out on a quest to find the sister that Cinder keeps crying out for in her sleep. The prince takes notice of the knights quest and the story begins to develop as the reader and knight try to figure out what the prince wants and how Ella will escape his dark plans.Along the way we are introduced to the legend of the trees; each life is tied to a tree and as long as the person lives to take care of it, so does the tree. I felt that if the story was centered more around this legend and in developing the story behind it, instead of trying to be a retelling of an old fairy tale, then the narrative would have left the reader with a better impression.The narrative was written in the third person, in a storytelling style, which feels as though you¿re being told a fairy tale, but also lacks structure in the plot. It wasn¿t very descriptive and so the setting and characters felt very two-dimensional. It also felt a little forced, especially since it had to live up to being a Cinderella story with a twist. I am convinced that it would have done better as a story about a girl named Ella, her dysfunctional family and the legend of the trees; instead there was a lot of untapped potential and I think anyone looking for another Cinderella story might not enjoy this particular version.[review of egalley from NetGalley]
kmartin802 on LibraryThing 5 months ago
This was an interesting variation on the Cinderella story that was also an exploration of grief and family dynamics. There once was a family with a mother and father and four daughters. When the father is swayed to evil by the wicked Prince, the family disintegrates. The Father abandons his family; the mother retreats to her weaving; and the daughters each grieve in their own way.The eldest sister becomes selfish and vain and the youngest becomes demanding and spoiled. It is left to the middle two daughters - Cinder and Ella - to try to hold the family together. Cinder in the caretaker; Ella chooses to emotionally retreat. When Cinder gets a job at the castle of the evil prince, she leaves Ella alone to care for her family. Ella runs away to look for a place where she is valued and loved but the evil Prince has other plans for her.For me, Ella was the star of this book. She is the one who acts and travels and learns and grows. She changes from being an indifferent sister to one who cares. She spends a good part of the first third of the book in tears (which made her unattractive to me). But once she decides on a course of action and gets to it, the tears go away and determination takes over. I grew to like her from a not-very-promising beginning.There is some romance and some humor in the story too. Ella relationship with the Knight Tanner provides much of both. Tanner is quite clumsy around Ella and she delights in teasing him about his clumsiness and his habit of getting lost. Fantasy lovers will enjoy this story for its rich language and underlying message.
TheLostEntwife on LibraryThing 5 months ago
Cinder and Ella is a fairy-tale re-telling. If you read many of my reviews, you know this is a specific genre that I absolutely adore. Even at 35, I never get tired of fairy tales and Cinderella is one of my favorites.Melissa Lemon takes a far different path then anything I¿ve read yet. She splits Cinderella into two people ¿ Cinder, a daughter who is obedient, servile, meek, and calm and Ella, a fiery-tempered girl who wants something more for her life. Added into the mix is a legend of trees, kidnapping, evil Princes and clumsy Knights.I will admit, this was a cute story. It had a good message, dealt with some universal themes (needing independence, showing responsibility) and had a sweet love story threaded through it. I think it¿s a story that any young girl in her teens would enjoy, provided she wasn¿t overly cynical and looking for sparkly vampires or the like.Still¿ there was something a bit lacking. I can¿t really place my finger on it, but I think it had to do with Cinder. I just couldn¿t connect with her, instead getting the feeling that the book was more about Ella. That isn¿t in itself a problem, but when you name your book after two characters, I sort of expect them to be equally treated, and they weren¿t. Cinder came off as a bit of a sop and Ella was definitely the likeable, easy-to-connect-to character.All that aside, if you are wanting a bit of a different twist on Cinderella, this isn¿t a waste of a read. It¿s interesting, cute, will make you laugh and is short enough to read in one sitting.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great book I would read it over and over until I was sick of it!
Book_Bite_Reviews More than 1 year ago
I didn't really like this story, it was alright but it definitely wasn't amazing. There weren't enough differences to make it its own "inspired by..." story and there weren't enough similarities to call it a retelling. It was kind of a let down. Melissa could have done a lot with this and put a whole new twist on the story, or just nicely retold it, but it almost seemed like she didn't want to go too far. Almost like she had an initial really good idea, but that was as far as she got. She didn't know how to make it thrive. I loved Ella character and the Knight, but I did not like Cinder at all. Im sure if the characters were better developed I would have liked a few more, but there were just kind of there in the end. I did not like the ending, either. It felt a little too rushed and it ended in a good note, but I don't know why. Nothing really happened to get rid of the bad. I really wanted to like Cinder and Ella, but I just couldn't.
salabat More than 1 year ago
This almost felt like the script for a narrator to read during a movie... I never felt connected to or involved in the story. It was really a shame because I felt there were some parts of this story that could have felt magical and beautiful, but they felt flat and hardly noteworthy...
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
NYbookloverSJ More than 1 year ago
Cinder and Ella by Melissa Lemon was a fun book. It can be enjoyed by older children and adults. It has some similarities to the original Cinderella story but the storyline is totally different. The family consists of a father, mother, and four sisters Katrina, Cinder, Ella, and Beatrice. The family was happy until the evil Prince Monticello knocked on their door and put an evil spell on the father. The father left the home and after that the family became very dysfunctional. The mother didn't pay much attention to her daughters and went into her own little world of working on her spinning wheel. She even went so far as to forget that she had two daughters, one being Cinder and the other Ella. She just remembered Cinder and in fact called her Cinderella. Katrina, the oldest daughter and Beatrice, the youngest daughter end up staying at home with their mother but Cinder and Ella leave the home and end up finding jobs. Cinder finds a job working at the castle where the evil prince lives and Ella finds a job working for a nice family in a neighboring town. Cinder starts to miss her sister Ella and cries in her sleep for her. A guard hears her crying and tells the prince. He orders the guard and some other guards to go find Ella. They find her and bring her back to Cinder. Ella is not too happy because she really liked the family. Cinder and Ella end up finding their father locked up in the castle. He is in bad shape. At the end of the story he does start to improve. There is some hope. I can relate to this story because I did come from a dysfunctional family. In a dysfunctional family, the children do become invisible as if they are not even there. There is hope for the family, maybe not in this generation but the next. This unbiased review was based on an electronic copy of the book provided by the publisher for the purpose of creating this review.
UpstateNYReader More than 1 year ago
I liked this book.
Shanella More than 1 year ago
Though it seems like it is, and the narrator begins the story that way, I don't think it's fair to call Cinder and Ella, by Melissa Lemon, a retelling of the Cinderella story. Sure, there is a prince, and a party, and a missing father, and horrible sisters, and Cinder; but this story isn't really about any of these things, it's really about Ella and the legend of the trees. Cinder and Ella follow the two sisters as they try to navigate life in their drama-filled household. Their father has disappeared and is assumed to be dead after speaking with the evil prince. Their mother sits in a corner all day, spinning at a wheel to make a living. Their older sister thinks her job is to primp and preen herself, while making demands of her mother for the best and newest clothing and accessories. Their youngest sister cries and generally behaves like a brat. Ella - forgotten by her mother, who merges her and Cinder's name together, referring to Cinder as Cinderella - is sullen and dissatisfied with her family's situation and holds fast to the hope that her father still lives. Cinder takes up employment at the castle, working as a servant while Ella runs away from home, distressed that she's left to carry out the desires of her demanding sisters. As Cinder works her way to the top, Ella find a new place to call home and all seems well until an unsuspecting knight starts out on a quest to find the sister that Cinder keeps crying out for in her sleep. The prince takes notice of the knights quest and the story begins to develop as the reader and knight try to figure out what the prince wants and how Ella will escape his dark plans. Along the way we are introduced to the legend of the trees; each life is tied to a tree and as long as the person lives to take care of it, so does the tree. I felt that if the story was centered more around this legend and in developing the story behind it, instead of trying to be a retelling of an old fairy tale, then the narrative would have left the reader with a better impression. The narrative was written in the third person, in a storytelling style, which feels as though you're being told a fairy tale, but also lacks structure in the plot. It wasn't very descriptive and so the setting and characters felt very two-dimensional. It also felt a little forced, especially since it had to live up to being a Cinderella story with a twist. I am convinced that it would have done better as a story about a girl named Ella, her dysfunctional family and the legend of the trees; instead there was a lot of untapped potential and I think anyone looking for another Cinderella story might not enjoy this particular version. [review of egalley from NetGalley]
epicrat More than 1 year ago
Cinderella has been retold in numerous of ways - Disney, historical, musical, pop culture, ninja, assassin, ugly sister's perspective, masculine - but here is one that claims she is actually 2 sisters named Cinder and Ella who each have their burdens to bear. Cinder has been the Atlas of the family, waiting on her sisters and mother hand and foot without complaint, while Ella has a harder time with being as patient. When Cinder leaves the family to be a castle servant, Ella tries to pick up the slack but it is obvious that her family would rather have Cinder. However, something wicked resides in the castle by the name of a supposed Prince Charming - and it is up to Ella to get to the bottom of it and rescue her sister. The Cinderella fairy tale retellings seems to be gaining popularity lately - and I can't seem to resist them as I patiently wait for Apocalypsie debut Queen Of Glass. I had a difficult time with diving into Cinder and Ella. I know that this was not supposed to have any bibbidies or bobbidies, but the story didn't draw me in very well. I thought it was about both Cinder and Ella - but Cinder becomes more of an afterthought as Ella takes the stage. I thought there'd be more to how they became "Cinderella" but it hardly mattered. The opening line promised a "corrected" version - but as the story slowly proceeded, it seemed like a completely unrelated story that had no bearing on this age-old fairy tale.
GHott More than 1 year ago
What a twist! I absolutely love it when authors take a classic and twist into a completely new story or tell it from a different perspective. While I didn't love this particular story, I did love the restructure. I'm not sure why I didn't like this suffice it to say that it just didn't keep my attention.