Friday, April 1, 2011

Book Review: Cinderella: Ninja Warrior by Maureen McGowan

Title: Cinderella: Ninja Warrior
Author: Maureen McGowan
Genre: Juvenile Fiction - Action & Adventure - Interactive Books
Subject: Fairy tale retelling
Publisher: Baker & Taylor Publishing Group
Release date: April, 1st, 2011
Length: 320 pages
I got this book: From the publisher for review through NetGalley

We all know the tale of Cinderella. In this retelling of this classic fairy tale, Cinderella has gained some extra skills. In this land where magic is common, Cinderella's stepmother is more evil then ever before. Cinderella faces new and harder challenges and there is no fairy Godmother to whisk her problems away. She has to take matters into her own hands this time, will she ever be able to gain her freedom. As this is an interactive book, the readers get to decide which choices Cinderella will make during crucial moments in the book.

Personal opinion:
When I first spotted this title on NetGalley, I thought it didn't fit. Cinderella and ninjas are two things that wouldn't mix in my mind. But I was curious nevertheless. Also this is my very first interactive book, so that added to my curiosity. I never have read another retelling of a fairy tale so I only have the children's tales to compare this to, but I had so much fun with this book! The writer has made Cinderella such a strong character and I like this version much better than the helpless Cinderella who just waited for a chance to be rescued. That Cinderella trains Ninja techniques in secret, felt a bit weird at first. But as I read more of the setting, it does fit in more and more until it was just a part of who she was. 

Another great thing about this book was that you get a good feeling of how sadistic Cinderella's stepmother actually is. It made me feel much more drawn into the story and this made me appreciate Cinderella's character even more. I liked how the love story between Cinderella and the Prince was made much more realistic and the writer also added some new parts to the story in general. All these points added up to a refreshing experience with complexer characters. The most fun part for me was that you get to choose how the story proceeds. This does mean you will skip certain parts and leaves room for a reread of this book to get a whole other story. The beginning and the outcome remain the same though, but the way to it changes. I have only read through the book once now, but I wouldn't mind picking it up again in the future to make different choices. I can highly recommend this book if you want to delve deeper into a fairy tale, with humor and a wink to the classic. This book is part of the Twisted Tales series and together with this story another fairy tale will be published: Sleeping Beauty: Vampire Slayer. I am curious if I will be amused by that story as much as I was with this one.

I liked it! 

Purchase links: Amazon
Other reviews: Over a Cuppa Tea
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