Carly Thompson's Reviews > Ash

Ash by Malinda Lo
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Dec 19, 09

bookshelves: 2009, fairy-tales, ya
Read in December, 2009

I was really disappointed to not enjoy this Young Adult novel as much as I had been hoping to. Marketed as a lesbian retelling of Cinderella (seemingly based on the Grimm brothers version), the story features many of the traditional elements of a Cinderella story - evil stepmother, a ball, etc. However, the two separate plots vie for prominence. The first plot concerns the world of the faerie which is represented by the male fairy Sidhean, who serves as Ash's fairy godfather and her potential enchanter. The second plot is the traditional Cinderella story with significant changes; Ash falls in love with Kaisa, the King's huntress, not a prince. The resolution to both plots felt rushed and unconvincing. I did not find the characters compelling and felt little emotional investment in whether Ash would find happiness. I have enjoyed many recent fairytale retellings (i.e. novels by Jessica Day George, Elizabeth C. Bunce, and Robin McKinley) and didn't feel that this novel was as accomplished.
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