Review – Princess Charming
  • Posted:
  • April 2, 2012
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I don’t know why these fluffy bodice rippers have become so enticing, but they have. I can’t explain it. I must be in the mood for irritating plots these days. Most of the time when I read romances I spend the whole book frustrated at everything – the dimwitted characterization, the most minimal of plot structures… the fact that I’ve read 4 of them now this year… sigh. At least this is the last one I own.

As far as the plot goes this is (once again) a retelling of a fairy tale, which we know from my previous post that I am a fan of. I’m still curious to see how the romance authors work the structure of certain fairy tales into the context of a romantic novel. However, none of the ones I have read so far would be fairy tales in the strictest sense of the word. They are, in fact, Jane Austen wanna-be bodice rippers… plain and simple. This one is no different. Princess Charming by Nicole Jordan takes the loosest idea of Cinderella and builds a tale on top of it. At no point would I have remembered that this was what it was supposed to be if the characters hadn’t been reminding me that “This is a Cinderella story and we’re supposed to be in a fairy tale.” Oh yes, you read that right… the characters are self-aware of this notion. Which makes it weird.

Ultimately it comes down to this – One character, Kate, decided that her brothers, sisters, and cousins are going to act out the roles of infamous “legendary lovers” and has even gone so far as to decide which stories the family will retell. This self-styled prophetess takes much glee when she sees her cousin, Ash, falling for an independent woman much lower than his station. Maura, the Cinderella character,  has lost her horse to another peer of the realm, the odious Mr. Deering, who has swindled Maura’s stepmother into handing over the prized stallion. He also defamed her father some time before and caused his untimely ruin and death. Maura vows to get her horse back and clear her Father’s name and Ash, becoming enamoured with her, helps her on her foolhardy quest.

Like I said, it’s barely Cinderella. To hear the characters say it is proves even more laughable with every mention. I think I would enjoy these fairy tale romances much better if they actually, oh… I don’t know… stuck to the fairy tale in mind?! It seems when they miss they really miss… Like a cannonball hitting the water in lieu of the side of a ship. Most of the time I can enjoy the romance it if I suspend disbelief on the fact that it’s supposed to be, at its core, a retelling. But every time the fairy tale aspects rear their heads I am almost taken aback. “Oh, right… it’s supposed to be Cinderella… because they keep telling me that. So it must be so.” Sigh.

The next one in the series is supposed to be a retelling of Romeo and Juliet, which might prove more interesting… but this one is, meh, ok… if you forget that it’s Cinderella, which you, unfortunately cannot.

3 out of 5 stars.

 – BP

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