Wednesday, February 10, 2010
Godmother by Carolyn Turgeon
Summary: Lillian is an old women who spends her days in a Manhattan bookstore and nights at home in her apartment. But Lillian has an intriguing secret. Bound behind her back are feathery wings – the remnants of the fairy godmother responsible for getting Cinderella to the ball. But on that night something went terribly wrong. Lillian fell in love with the prince herself, and attended the ball in place of Cinderella. For her mistake, she was banished to live among humans. One day she meets Veronica and suddenly it becomes clear to Lillian, she's been given a second chance, all she has to do is find a soulmate for Veronica to right her wrongs and return home
Review: Everyone enjoys a good fairy tale from time to time. The stories are familiar and the characters follow the same destiny, concluding with happily ever after. The predictability of fairy tales is satisfying and causes them to be retold over and over for generations. Some fairy tales can become boring over time because of the never changing plot.
Turgeon takes what you know about the story of Cinderella and delivers a twisted, yet interesting dish. No one would consider reading the story through the eyes of the fairy Godmother, since she was merely a tool for Cinderella to attend the ball. It’s not possible to think the fairy Godmother might also be in love with the Prince. It is this hidden love that leaves Cinderella alone and the fairy Godmother banished from her homeland. The story follows her sorrowful journey of redemption and the longing to return home.
I enjoyed Turgeon’s unique twist to this classic tale. Each chapter began with a glance into the past. Were the truth behind what happened on the fateful night of the ball is reveled. I thought the ending would be predicable and as history shows, end with happily ever after. However, Turgeon took me for a ride I was not prepared for and I found myself starving for more. The book ends with an ambiguous twist that left me pondering the true outcome of the events in the story. Is it possible the story of Cinderella was just a fabrication of a distressed old woman?
In conclusion, this book delivered a beautiful retelling of Cinderella from a point of view I had never considered. The language was enchanting and the characters were realistic. Thought the setting was confusing at times because I’ve never been to Manhattan, so it was difficult to follow all the street names given. I often found myself losing the characters when they traveled to new destinations. However, I look forward to her next book were she places a twist on the Little Mermaid.