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Book Review: Ella: An Amish Retelling of Cinderella by Sarah Price

May 20, 2018

 

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Fairytale retellings are a bit addicting for me - the minute I see the word "fairytale," I immediately pick up the book and start reading. And if it's an Amish retelling? Now my interest is peaked! Cinderella is a classic, and it's a fairly simple tale to mold into whatever subgenre you're focused on, whether it's contemporary, paranormal, Christian, etc. I loved how Sarah Price took the story and made it so original in an Amish setting, really drawing me in and keeping things surprising, which is hard to do with a retelling. Usually things are super predictable, but not in this book!

Ella Troyer's father passed a year ago, and now that she's alone with her stepmother and stepsisters, things have become unbearable. Forced to do all of the household chores and miss community activities, she feels trapped and is beginning to think she may never know anything else. When a handsome man comes to town, all the young women in her community see him as a catch, but he only has eyes for Ella. But his reason for being there is closely connected to Ella's family, and that connection inevitably leads to conflict. When her stepsisters decide they want him for themselves, it will take a large helping of faith to carry Ella through to a happily ever after.

Hannes and Ella were just about perfect for each other, and I loved how their relationship grew over time! It wasn't your typical love-at-first-sight fairytale, but instead it built over time with sweet meetings by the river and quiet conversations out of sight of Ella's family. Ella was basically a saint, which fits with the Cinderella story but became somewhat irritating as time went on. She let her family walk all over her for so long, and while she stood up for herself later in the story, I wanted her to get some gumption a little sooner. Hannes was a great contrast to her, as he had no problem standing up to her family and helping Ella see how strong she could be. 

There were several plot twists that helped keep this retelling unique and exciting, and I am eager to read the next story in the series! That one will be a retelling of Snow White, I imagine, as seven male Amish brothers living in solitude were mentioned. 

**I received a free copy via NetGalley and this is my honest review.**

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