Skip to main content

Ella Enchanted

A review featuring Bit (Bibliophile in Training), age 7

Cinderella has never been one of my favorite fairy tales. The main character is just too passive. Then I took my children's literature course for my degree and discovered Ella Enchanted and fell in love. It remains to this day my favorite fairy tale retelling, containing one of my favorite literary couples of all time. I loved it so much I made my AG students read it every year during our supplemental reading instruction time. I still haven't gotten over what they did to it when they turned it into a movie. WHATEVER YOU DO, DON"T SEE THE MOVIE. I have been waiting to introduce it to Bit with much anticipation.

The Story
Ella was "gifted" at birth by the fairy Lucinda with obedience. Ella is compelled to obey every command she is given. This makes her a puppet, but a not nice well mannered one. She fights the curse with all her might and makes life as difficult as possible for people who order her around. She is happy and  protected until her mother dies leaving her at the mercy of her selfish and ruthless father. From the drudgery of boarding school to her father's marriage to the odious mother of her worst enemy Ella's one focus is to find Lucinda and get her to take back the curse. But in a land filled with dangerous man eating ogres that is easier said than done. Her only comforts are her friendship with the Prince and the care of her fairy godmother. Ella comes to realize that her curse is dangerous to more people than herself and she must figure out a way to end it or give up the person she loves the most.

Bit's Thoughts
I like Ella Enchanted because it is a very good book. I like Ella because she tries to break her curse and is very brave. I also like Ella because she's very smart. I like Char because I think he is very sweet. My favorite part was the end because it was happy. This is the best Cinderella story I ever read. I wish there was a second one.

My Thoughts
This book is an all time favorite of mine. It is one of my go to comfort books. It is a book filled with magic, and fantastical creatures but at its heart it is a story of a girl trying to make her own place in the world. Ella is a heroine you can cheer for. I love how she shows initiative, how she refuses to become the doormat the curse compels her to be, how she works hard to broaden her mind and how self sacrificing she becomes. Ella works hard for and earns her happily ever after. Then there is Char who is sweet and humble yet strong willed and commanding at the same time. They are absolutely perfect together and the way their story unfolds is my favorite part of the novel. I love how they begin as friendly acquaintances, develop a friendship, and the love grows from those things. I love that the majority of their "courtship" is conducted via correspondence. Those letters make me swoon every time I read them, as does the way the  proposal goes at the end. 

Don't think this is just a "girl" book either. Every year I taught this the boys rolled their eyes and groaned, but by the middle they were unfailingly just as excited about it as the girls. I even had one try to smuggle a copy out of the class so he could read the end during lunch.

This is really a book for anyone who loves a good story and it answers all those annoying little questions brought up in Cinderella. Why does the shoe only fit her? Why midnight? If she had a fairy godmother why did it take so long for her to get help? The answers are all here.

What Bit and I are reading next: The Penderwicks on Gardam Street by Jeanne Birdsall


Popular posts from this blog

TTT: Most Recent Additions to My TBR List

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly themed blog hop created by  The Broke and the Bookish  and now hosted at  That Artsy Reader Girl . This Week's Topic: Most Recent Additions to My TBR List From Most Recent to Least: What books have recently caught your eye?

Favorite Kissing Scenes

When thinking of a favorite things post I could do for February I decided it would have to be kissing. I've already done couples and I was feeling in the mood to do something fluffy and Valentine's related. So kisses it is. I read more MG than YA, and the YA I read tends to not focus on romance so this was actually harder than I expected it to be though a few jumped into my head right away. (And one of my choices does actually come from a MG book. One is adult. Gasp!) The actual scene from the book is quoted followed by my thoughts. The king lifted a hand to her cheek and kissed her. It was not a kiss between strangers, not even a kiss between a bride and a groom. It was a kiss between a man and his wife, and when it was over, the king closed his eyes and rested his forehead against the hollow of the queen's shoulder, like a man seeking respite, like a man reaching home at the end of the day . - The King of Attolia by Megan Whalen Turner Turner doesn't write the


Shadowshaper  by Daniel José Older is everywhere. Best of lists. Award buzz. Blogs everywhere. It's one of those books everyone is reading and talking about. I had it on my TBR but decided I definitely needed to read it before the year was out just so I could weigh in on one of the most talked about books of 2015 if asked. It is deserving of every good thing said about it. Every. One. Sierra was looking forward to a relaxing summer break. Her plans involved hanging out with her friends and painting. They did not involve being chased by zombie like creatures and threatened by a magical power connected to her family's heritage she has never heard of. When murals begin fading all over her Brooklyn neighborhood, Sierra is perplexed. When her grandfather, who had a stroke, begins to apologize and starts repeating strange phases and insisting Sierra get the help of a boy she barely knows to help her finish her mural, Sierra is concerned but mostly about her grandfather. Then at a

Jinx's Fire

I have been a big fan of Jinx and company from the very first book, which felt like such a perfect Brandy book. The conclusion of Sage Blackwood's trilogy, Jinx's Fire , finished the story beautifully and is definitely my favorite of the three. Spoilers for first two books abound. Read those first: Jinx Jinx's Magic The Urwald is in danger from more than one direction and has no hope of defending itself if there is not unity amongst the people. Jinx, Sophie, Elfwyn, Wendell, and a dedicated group of others are working to make this happen as quickly as they can. Time is running out. At the same time, they are still dealing with the threat of the Bonemaster from within, and the Urwald's magic is fading. Where is it going? Can it be restored? And where has the Bonemaster put Simon? Jinx is the only one who can find the answers to these questions, and harnass the Urwald's power to save them all, but only if he is willing. Jinx has some serious attitude in this

Serafina and the Black Cloak

Serafina and the Black Cloak  by Robert Beatty is a thrilling tale of mystery and adventure set at the Biltmore Estate in Asheville, NC in 1899. Having lived in Asheville and visited the house several times, there was no way I was going to pass up a chance to read this. (Also it's MG fantasy, always a bonus for me.) Serafina lives in secret in the basement of the Vanderbilt's spacious vacation home. She has lived there most of her life. Her father worked on the house as it was being built and is the mechanic who runs the massive generator and keeps the electricity going. Serafina is the chief rat catcher, slipping through the halls of her massive home secretly and quietly. She is light on her feet, sees well in the dark, and is quick enough to catch the vermin and keep them out. Serafina knows she if different and strange. Her father insists she stay hidden. But all that changes when one night Serafina witnesses a horrible crime. A little girl, a guest in the house, is fleein