All the Ever Afters: The Untold Story of Cinderella's Stepmother
We all know the story of Cinderella. Or do we?
As rumors about the cruel upbringing of beautiful newlywed Princess Cinderella roil the kingdom, her stepmother, Agnes, who knows all too well about hardship, privately records the true story…
A peasant born into serfdom, Agnes is separated from her family and forced into servitude as a laundress’s apprentice when she is only ten years old. Using her wits and ingenuity, she escapes her tyrannical matron and makes her way toward a hopeful future. When teenaged Agnes is seduced by an older man and becomes pregnant, she is transformed by love for her child. Once again left penniless, Agnes has no choice but to return to servitude at the manor she thought she had left behind. Her new position is nursemaid to Ella, an otherworldly infant. She struggles to love the child who in time becomes her stepdaughter and, eventually, the celebrated princess who embodies everyone’s unattainable fantasies. The story of their relationship reveals that nothing is what it seems, that beauty is not always desirable, and that love can take on many guises.
~MY QUICKIE REVIEW~
Take the story of Cinderella and take out all the fantastical elements and you'll have an idea of what this story is about. This is not fantasy…it's more like historical fiction. This is all the harshness and unfairness of the medieval times with a Cinderella twist. Told from the point of view of Agnes…the so-called wicked Step-mother. Her story is decidedly poignant and I totally empathized with her. Despite having some slow spots in the beginning, I thoroughly enjoyed this, and by the halfway point, I was totally invested.
☆4.2☆STARS - GRADE=B+
~BREAKDOWN OF RATINGS~
Main Characters~ 4/5
Secondary Characters~ 3.8/5
The Feels~ 4/5
Theme or Tone~ 4/5
Flow (Writing Style)~ 3.5/5
Backdrop (World Building)~ 4.3/5
Ending~ 4.5/5 Cliffhanger~ Nope.
Book Cover~ It's okay…
Narration~☆4☆ for Jane Copeland, was admirably done.
Setting~ Some sort of Shire and a royal court, it was hard to decipher.
Source~ Audiobook (Library)