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Review: Cinderella Is Dead by Kalynn Bayron


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 . . .


I loved Cinderella is Dead, it takes the original fairytale and completely flips everything we know on its head. It’s not really a retelling, because this book isn’t about Cinderella, it’s about what happened next, 200 years later. There are some great twists and turns along the way and I was completely captivated. 

The post Cinderella era sees misogyny completely dominating society. Women are suppressed in every way, forced to marry whatever man wants them, and then obey their every rule and command. It seems only Sophia sees how wrong this all is, not only does she not want to enter into an abusive marriage, she’s also in love with a girl! The structure of this broken society was sadly believable, and there are plenty of heartbreaking moments as the novel progresses. 

What I most enjoyed was the fresh take on the Cinderella tale. No stone is left unturned in the original story, with every element reexamined and the rose tinted view removed. I particularly enjoyed this version of the Fairy Godmother, who henceforth shall be though of as the queen of sass! I just loved every time Sophia discovered something new, and some other part of the fairytale was tarnished.

Sophia was strong, fierce and completely determined to overthrown the tyrant controlling the kingdom. She was exactly the kind of girl I would want my daughter reading about. Comfortable with her own identity, and willing to stand up to anyone trying to take that away from her. 

In case you couldn’t already tell, I really enjoyed this one. Releasing in the UK on the 6th of August definitely get your hands on a copy and give it a go. Cinderella is dead, and waiting for you to rediscover her story.

Review copy received via Netgalley, thank you to the publisher for the advance copy. All thoughts are my own.

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