Friday, June 1, 2012
Release Day Review: The Fairytale Keeper: Avenging the Queen
Author: Andrea Cefalo
Genre: Historical Fiction
Pub Date: June 1, 2012 (Happy Release Day!), Scarlet Primrose Press
Source: I received my copy from the author for review -- thank you so much, Ms. Cefalo!!
Synopsis (from the back cover)
Many called her Snow White, but few knew her as the Fairytale Keeper...
Snow White was a pet name her mother had given her, but her mother's dead now. Adelaide hates that name anyway. A rampant fever claimed Adelaide's mother just like a thousand others in Cologne where people die without Last Rites and the dead are dumped in a large pit outside of the city walls. Adelaide's father is determined to obtain a funeral for his wife, but that requires bribing the parish priest, Father Soren. When Soren commits an unforgivable atrocity, he pushes Adelaide to her breaking point, but if she seeks justice against the cruel priest, she risks sacrificing everything: her father, her friends, her first love, and maybe even her life.
This is really the first book that I've read where an author takes a fairytale and paints a story of historical fiction. Cefalo has written an intriguing, vivid story about a young girl in 13th century Cologne who would be immortalized to us as Snow White. Adelaide is a strong heroine whom you can't help but like and cheer for as she stands up for her family and what she believes is right. Her supporting cast of characters is colorful and varied, from her grieving father who spends much of his time drinking to that priest you love to hate, Father Soren. And of course, you can't ignore the sweet romance developing between Adelaide and her childhood friend, Ivo.
One of my favorite aspects about this book is how Cefalo is able to weave other well-known fairytales into the storyline. You will meet Cinderella, as one of the people in Adelaide's life, and hear Adelaide tell the story of Hansel and Gretel, just to name a couple of examples. By adding these other stories, Cefalo adds a touch more magic to Adelaide's world. The story might start off just a touch slow, though the opening scenes are certainly explosive. But the pace picks up with those fairytale "asides" and the unfolding story of the corruption of the Church will keep you turning pages to find out what happens next. And while there is a satisfying conclusion to a major plot line, we are also left wanting more as the bigger picture takes shape.
If you love retellings of your favorite fairytales, be sure to pick up a copy of this first book in the Fairytale Keeper series. It's a quick, easy read -- perfect for this summer! I can't wait to see what Cefalo has in store for us next. And doesn't that gorgeous cover make you want to read this book all on its own?!
If you have reviewed this book, please feel free to leave a link to your review in the comments section!