As I told you all in my post about novel #93, I am obsessed with reading to Mini Mimi. Already. Girlfriend will be one month tomorrow and she's already "read" two chapter books and a plethora of board books. Okay, so maybe I helped her sound out a word or two, but honestly? The girl is a genius!
And she loved this last book! LOVED!
At number 92 is Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine.
Totes thought this was just a movie with Anne Hathaway and McDreamy. (He IS in it, right?) However, I totes thought wrong. This book is FABULOUS! And I was lucky enough to snag an older edition that isn't all movied-up. It felt old and well worn, like a book and a story like this should. Okay, so the story was first published in 1997, but whatevs, I liked my non-glittery cover. 'Nuff said.
Moving along. This book is like a fabulously rich and expanded version of Cinderella...but better. You see, Ella's mother, who was fabulously fun and unconventional, dies and Ella is shipped off to finishing school by her distant father (who is a total douche). Prior to leaving, she meets and totally charms the prince in addition to meeting two horrid little girls who, along with their mother, are after nothing but money. Oh! And perhaps most important is the fact that Ella was cursed by a fairy at birth, making her obedient whenever anyone tells her to do anything. Which, yes, to us teachers, sounds pretty dreamy....I mean, imagine saying take out your pencils ONLY ONCE! But in reality, it is not so lovely and plagues Ella.
Long story short...the awful mother of the two horrid girls marries Ella's father and figure out the curse, commanding Ella to do everything they want and basically making her a scullery maid. Seriously, the book is so well written that I could feel my heart rate increase when these little brats were in full sucking-it mode. Ella and the prince are in love but she won't marry him because she's afraid the curse will eventually mean the downfall of their country....what with anyone being able to command her to do anything at any time.
No worries - there is a happy ending complete with balls, coaches fashioned out of pumpkins and glass slippers. (For reals.) Throw in a few adventures with ogres and fairies and you have yourself a pretty fantastic book. Perf for a unit on fairy tales, for a read aloud, for an independent text (it's a guided U)...I give this book two enthusiastic naps up. (And believe me, at this point in my life, TWO NAPS sounds like winning the freaking lottery!)
So if you are unafraid of curling up by the pool with a book that is clearly written for elementary aged children, I say, go for it. And don't forget the fruity cocktail!
P.S. - Next up is Sideways Stories from Wayside School if you want to join me!