Author: Bettie Sharpe
Release Date: 22 February 2011
Length: Novella - 32,000 words
Purchasing Info: Goodreads, Author's site, Amazon
Grade: 5 stars
Goodreads appetizer: Everyone loves Prince Charming. They have to—he’s cursed. Every man must respect him. Every woman must desire him. One look, and all is lost.
Ember would rather carve out a piece of her soul than be enslaved by passions not her own. She turns to the dark arts to save her heart and becomes the one woman in the kingdom able to resist the Prince’s Charm.
Poor girl. If Ember had spent less time studying magic and more time studying human nature, she might have guessed that a man who gets everything and everyone he wants will come to want the one woman he cannot have.
Warning: This story contains sex, violence, and naughty words. It’s based on a fairytale, but it isn’t for kids.
Note: This story is available as a free read on the author's website: http://www.bettiesharpe.com/
Gist of the book:
This dark take on the Cinderella story starts with a red haired-crooked foot girl named Ember who cuts off her finger in order to give her soul to witchcraft and protect herself from the curse of the Prince. With the help of her passed mother’s charmed vial Ember is able to keep the curse at bay for now, but she can feel the pull...the want...the need. When the Prince seeks her out the curse grows stronger but can Ember resist such an irresistible curse from this charming Prince?
First off this is not like the sweet fairy tale you have read when you were a little kid and this story is definitely for the mature audience. Okay, yes this story has similar Cinderella themes like the the ball, Prince, step mother and sisters, but it is really quite different. Ember is the main character and she gave her soul to witchcraft in order to protect herself from the Prince’s curse. How did she do this you ask? Well, she cut off her finger and fed it to the fire. I know pretty hardcore but she is definitely not like Cinderella *lol*, actually I like her more. She has red hair, freckles, black eyes, and a crooked foot which is quite refreshing to have a character not be perfect, but still is believed to be beautiful.
Her step mother *Minette* and sisters *Sylvie and Dulcie* are actually quite disfunctional. What I mean is they are whores for hire and run a profitable whore house which ends up to be Embers house. I know all families have problems *shrugs* but despite their obvious flaws I liked how caring they were for each other and how sweet they were to Ember. I know this sounds kinda Jerry Springer-ish, but honestly I found them quite funny and endearing.
Ah yes the Prince, Adrian Juste was cursed. Everyone around him adored him and found him perfect in every way. Women would throw themselves at him and men do as he commanded. No one saw him for who he really was until Ember did, of course ;)
Verdict: I liked how the author uniquely adjusted the common fairytale into this interesting story about curses, witchcraft, vulgarity, and sex. It just simply works and when you read this story you will completely understand. For you die-hard fairytale types, please heed the warning Ms. Sharpe gives you in the beginning. Then, decide if you want to continue because once you know it’s not your usual happy fairy tale and accept it, you will enjoy this story more =) Thank you Bettie Sharpe for a retelling of this old stuffy Cinderella story to a clever, yet surprisingly delightful story called Ember.
Cover rating: 5 Band-aids!
Book rating: 5 Band-aids!