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Cinderella is Dead | Book Review

Title: Cinderella is Dead

Author: Kalynn Bayron

Publisher: Bloomsbury YA

Genre: Young Adult Fiction

Expected Date of Publication: July 7, 2020


It’s 200 years after Cinderella found her prince, but the fairy tale is over. Teen girls are now required to appear at the Annual Ball, where the men of the kingdom select wives based on a girl’s display of finery. If a suitable match is not found, the girls not chosen are never heard from again.

Sixteen-year-old Sophia would much rather marry Erin, her childhood best friend, than parade in front of suitors. At the ball, Sophia makes the desperate decision to flee, and finds herself hiding in Cinderella’s mausoleum. There, she meets Constance, the last known descendant of Cinderella and her step sisters. Together they vow to bring down the king once and for all–and in the process, they learn that there’s more to Cinderella’s story than they ever knew . . .

This fresh take on a classic story will make readers question the tales they’ve been told, and root for girls to break down the constructs of the world around them.

In a dystopian world called Lille, every teenager is required to attend the annual ball prescribed by the King Manford in accordance to what Cinderella’s legacy is. This ball serves as their ground to meet their husband. Women in Lille are not duly taken care of. They are just a wife, in house, doing chores. Sophia, a Woman of Color, has one mission. To overthrow the Patriarchy. With the help of one of Cinderella’s living family member and the fairy godmother, together they will stoop down to end the Lille’s overdue sufferings under the hands of a cruel king.

A Queer Black Girl with a domination and perseverance is what we need right now. When the past meets the present, this retelling is full of angst and twisted drama. Cinderella is Dead is not just your normal Cinderella retelling. It is evil and fierce. I honestly love the book not just by its cover (well, I give a thousand-star rating for that cover) but for the lessons engraved with it.

The character building is great. I never thought the characters will make the book more interesting and predominant. Starting from the Lead Sophia, which is so splendid, to the Fairy godmother, which I didn’t knew existed, to the King and to the people living in Lille. The timeframe of the book is perfect for each of the character to understand their viability.

I am proud to say that this book is a page turner. I can’t stop reading until the final page. The twisty drama inside the book got me goosebumps. I’ve read dystopian retellings before but this book has a tremendous impact on my love on fairytale and princesses. Though, some instalove scenes didn’t convince me more to believe, but the friendship love in this is an actual gem. I can’t stop thinking now if Cinderella is a living princess with more to tell but now gone, or is there really something in every pages of Cinderella’s story? I didn’t expect that plot twist to be so good. I was literally shock when I read it and it didn’t imagine it to be so surreal. The collaboration of Cinderella’s ancient story to our present struggles bring this book to my top-tier.

Lesson learned in this story is don’t let the Patriarchy let you down.

You are a Women; you have all the rights in this world.

Friendship and Family is very important in times when you’re lost.

You don’t need a fairy godmother to create some magic. You are the magic.

A twisted, epic, and fiery fairytale that will question your childhood.

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About the Author:

Kalynn Bayron is an author and classically trained vocalist. she grew up in Anchorage, Alaska. when she’s not writing you can find her listening to Ella Fitzgerald on loop, attending the theater, watching scary movies, and spending time with her kids. she currently lives in Texas with her family.

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