Friday, November 2, 2012

A Kiss at Midnight by Eloise James

4 Stars
This is an adorable (and adult) retelling of the Cinderella story.  Kate is the Cinderella in this story.  Instead of evil stepsisters, she had one kind but flighty half-sister.  There was indeed an evil stepmother.  And we learn that Kate’s father was not the blameless beloved man from the Disney version :).  The prince, Gabriel, is from Marburg and must marry a Russian princess for money.  Not for himself, but for those hangers-on that rely on him.  Kate’s sister needs the prince’s permission to marry the prince’s nephew (really I supposed that Kate’s sister’s fiancé needs the permission as he is the prince’s nephew), but he must meet Victoria (the sister) in order to do this.  Victoria is unable to go and Kate had to go in Victoria’s place (as Victoria).  As someone else mentioned the prince quickly learns Kate’s real identity, which I found refreshing.  I find it frustrating when the reader knows the truth and a main character labors under misinformation the entire time.

It took too long for the hero and heroine to meet and it just took too long to get the story rolling in general.  Once it did though I found I was thinking about the story long after I had turned off the kindle.  I wanted to get back to the characters and see what would happen.  The author clearly has a sense of humor.  My favorite part is when Kate is trying to train Victoria’s dogs (which she must take around in public for the disguise).  She uses cheese to do this, and at one point she is taking a boat ride with the prince and it comes out that she has stuffed her reticule full of cheese (dog treats).

I loved how strong the heroine was.  She was charming and witty.  She laughed and made others laugh.  I enjoyed that there weren’t overtly catty females causing general mayhem.

I would recommend this to anyone who enjoys a sweet (and sometimes steamy) retelling of classic fairy tales.   

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