Title: Cinderella is Dead
Author: Kalynn Bayron
Release date: July 7th, 2020
It’s 200 years since Cinderella found her prince, but the fairytale is over.
Sophia knows the story though, off by heart. Because every girl has to recite it daily, from when she’s tiny until the night she’s sent to the royal ball for choosing. And every girl knows that she has only one chance. For the lives of those not chosen by a man at the ball . are forfeit.
But Sophia doesn’t want to be chosen – she’s in love with her best friend, Erin, and hates the idea of being traded like cattle. And when Sophia’s night at the ball goes horribly wrong, she must run for her life. Alone and terrified, she finds herself hiding in Cinderella’s tomb. And there she meets someone who will show her that she has the power to remake her world.
“I think we need to burn the whole thing to the ground and start over. The entire system, the ideals that have been woven into this society. It all has to go.”
This was such a strong Cinderella retelling (in a post-Cinderella story world). We get some amazing queer girls overthrowing the patriarchy and a strong battle against the misogyny and homophobia that exists in this dystopian society.
I loved that this book was gay right from the start. Sophia knows who she is, knows what she wants, and she knows that she’s going to try to get it. Her society expects her to attend the annual ball where girls must be chosen by men to become their property/wives, but Sophia sees how wrong this is and knows someone must do something or more and more girls will be hurt.
I really loved the fairytale twists in this. This story takes place 200 years after the Cinderella story we know, but that story holds weight in this society and there’s lies to what actually happened. The plot of this was what really made the story stand out for me.
The writing was easy to follow, but it was a bit slower paced at times it felt like. I loved the story and characters, but didn’t feel the high-stakes pressure in the pacing of the plot.
Overall, I’d definitely recommend this one for someone looking for a story with sapphic girls explicitly fighting a patriarchal system.
*ARC received through NetGalley for honest review*