(I was not asked to review this book by the author, nor was I paid to review this book. I review only in the hopes others will read, find the same enjoyment I did and hope the author sees and smiles at the knowledge that their book is not only being read but greatly enjoyed!)

This weekend in one sitting I finished “Cinder & Ella” by Kelly Oram. I’d never read anything by her before and let me tell I was incredibly surprised. I have a hard time reading new authors because I’m very snobbish that if I don’t know them how do I know if they’re good or not? I have realized this is an idiotic way of looking at things, because I’m missing out on a lot of good books, and for the sheer fact that one day that new author someone doesn’t know is going to be me!

Cinder & Ella is a retelling of the Cinderella story. In what I find to be a happy twist Cinder is a guy and not at all a real prince – just an absolutely devilishly handsome movie star – so you know, America’s royalty. Ella is one of the most relatable characters I’ve read in a long time. She’s eighteen but just suffered a horrible car accident that not only killed her mother but left her with burns covering most of her body among other devastating injuries. There isn’t a second in the book that you’re not cheering her on or feel as if you’re suddenly in her shoes experiencing everything she is going through. It’s amazing to find that level of connectedness with a character that I have so little in common with.

The step-sisters are more in-depth that I’ve seen in any Cinderella retelling that I’ve read. Ana is absolutely despicable – but at the same time one of those characters you love to hate. Juliette is much more sane and less frustrating – eventually even becoming Ella’s friend, which is so awesome.

I honestly don’t want to give too much away – because it’s much more fun to read a book without knowing everything that’s going to happen! So what I will say is simply this…

Kelly Oram has a way of creating characters that leap off the page.  She uses sarcasm and good old-fashioned wit with a flare that reminds me of the writing on Gilmore Girls – where you find yourself literally laughing out loud. She writes from both a feminine perspective and a masculine perspective flawlessly – which as a writer myself I know is not any easy task.

And on that note…I’m off to read all her other books! 🙂

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