Godmother: The Secret Cinderella Story, by Carolyn Turgeon

Cover ImageFinished 10-24-09, rating 3/5, Fantasy, pub. 2009

I loved the scribbles in the margins, the notes in the front of the books that told their stories, the ways they passed from one person to another.  “To Jennifer, Christmas 1921.  May these words stay with you.” The stray phrases and numbers jotted on the side of a page – “Indian Taj, 74th Street” emerging from the margins of Utopia, “BUY PUMPKINS” blaring up at me from the back cover of To the Lighthouse.  As I sat behind the register, carefull erasing the penciled marks, I felt as if each book had a secret to tell, only to me.

 Chapter 1

Lil is a fallen fairy, one who broke the ultimate sin by falling in love with a human.  And not just any human, but the fantasy of many a young girl, Prince Charming.  Lil was the fairy godmother to Cinderella and in charge of getting her and the Prince to meet and marry, but she made the mistake of taking a peek at the Prince in advance and her heart’s fate was sealed.

Now, Lil is living as an old woman in New York City working as small used bookstore.  The owner of the store is a friend who finally recovered from his divorce and when  a beautiful young woman walks in to the store, Lil thinks getting them together will be her way back home.  There is a charity ball coming up and the couple agrees to attend together and Lil can feel the fairy world coming for her.

This is not your average fairy tale retelling.  It is dark and offbeat, which I liked, but Lil was not a character I fell in love with, even though I wanted to.  I mean who wouldn’t love a fairy godmother?  I liked the way the story was told, alternating between New York and her past life as a fairy.  I really wanted to like it more, but it did keep me interested the whole way through.

I recommend this if you like fairy tale retellings or fairies. 

This was a library copy.