Saturday, January 12, 2008

Bella at Midnight by Diane Stanley

I started out really enjoying this take on the Cinderella story. Bella is the daughter of a nobleman who doesn't want anything to do with her after her mother dies in childbirth. She is sent to a wet nurse, who happens to also have been the wet nurse for Prince Julian. Bella and Julian grow up the closest of friends until circumstances separate them. You can sort of guess the outcome, since this is, after all, a Cinderella story.

I liked how the story is told from the perspective of different characters. What turned me off near the end were the repeated religious references. It just got to be a little much. I give this one 3.5 stars out of 5, but would have given it 4 if it hadn't started to feel a little preachy.

This book is a 2007-2008 Texas Bluebonnet Nominee, which I'm trying to complete. I'm not sure I'm going to finish it before the new list comes into effect, though. It also completes requirement #3 (book with a first name in the title) for Annie's What's In a Name Challenge.


Debi said...

You had me totally sold on this one until you got to what turned you off. Afraid that would sort of ruin it for me, too. Too bad, it sounds like a pretty interesting take on Cinderella.

Somer said...

It may not effect you in the same way. It was reflective of the time, and I tried to just take it in stride at first. I wish I hadn't taken it back to the library already, because I'd like to go back and see just what it was that left a bad taste in my mouth.

The story itself was excellent, and I was ready to count it as my favorite nominee so far (out of about 10 read).