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The Resource Stepsister, Jennifer Donnelly

Stepsister, Jennifer Donnelly

Label
Stepsister
Title
Stepsister
Statement of responsibility
Jennifer Donnelly
Creator
Author
Subject
Genre
Language
eng
Summary
Isabelle is one of Cinderella's ugly stepsisters, who cut off their toes in an attempt to fit into the glass slipper; but there is more to her story than a maimed foot, for the Marquis de la Chance is about to offer her a choice and the opportunity to change her fate--there will be blood and danger, but also the possibility of redemption and triumph, and most of all the chance to find her true self
Storyline
Tone
Writing style
Character
Review
  • Grades 9-12 /* Starred Review */ ""I have known battle-hardened soldiers who could not do what you did,"" the grand vizier tells Isabelle de la Paumé after, on her mother's behest, she cuts off her toes so she can fit her foot into a glass slipper and win a prince's hand in marriage. He doesn't mean it as a compliment: ""She is unnatural. Unhinged. Dangerous."" In the end, it is Isabelle's beautiful stepsister, Ella, who marries the prince, and Isabelle's remaining family is shunned. Ugly and disfigured Isabelle's destiny seems mapped and set. But elsewhere, Fate and Chance are at odds. Fate, a wily crone, and Chance, a mischievous young man, have wagered on Isabelle de la Paumé. Chance believes she can alter her sad future; Fate thinks it's better that she doesn't. When Isabelle is tasked with finding the pieces of her heart, she holds in her hands not only her own destiny but also the fates of many. Printz Honor Book author Donnelly offers up a stunningly focused story that rips into the heart of a familiar fairy tale. The gorgeous prose and the fairy tale themes have obvious appeal, but the real strengths here are the depth of character across the board; the examination of the cost of beauty in a world that reveres it; and Isabelle herself, a shattered but not unredeemable girl with a warrior's heart. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Donnelly's books are at the sweet spot—best-selling award winners—and as she tackles the always-popular Cinderella story, she'll have no trouble finding an audience. -- Maggie Reagan (Reviewed 4/15/2019) (Booklist, vol 115, number 16, p52)
  • Gr 9 Up—Donnelly brilliantly reimagines what happens after the "happily ever" in "Cinderella," from the point of view of Ella's ugly stepsister Isabelle. As in the original Grimms' tale, Isabelle cut off her toes to fit into the glass slipper but failed to win the prince. Her destiny has long been drawn by the ancient female Fates who map each human life. Their charming rival Chance steals Isabelle's map and wagers the oldest Fate that he can change the path of Isabelle's life, thus beginning a chess match with Isabelle as the pawn. Despite Isabelle's best efforts to behave, her anger always wins out, especially after the hypocritical townspeople shun and ridicule her and her smart older sister Tavi for how they treated Ella. Isabelle's lost everything—her beloved horse Nero and the groom's son Felix, with whom she spent her childhood riding and sparring. Tanaquill, the fairy queen, shows herself to Isabelle and says she will grant her greatest wish if Isabelle can "find the lost pieces of her heart." Military history–loving Isabelle must use her wits, courage, and strength to withstand the many hardships she faces as she tries to forge her own way. She learns to value herself and not let others define her or what she can do. VERDICT This first-rate fairy-tale retelling effectively portrays female strength and determination and will resonate with readers who want to be valued for who they are, not what they look like.—Sharon Rawlins, New Jersey State Library, Trenton --Sharon Rawlins (Reviewed 05/01/2019) (School Library Journal, vol 65, issue 4, p103)
  • “Cinderella” has seen many variations, but few detail what happens beyond the royal marriage, and even fewer cast a light on Cinderella’s family. Printz Award-winning Donnelly (A Northern Light) does both in this feminist rendition that follows “ugly” stepsister Isabelle. Rather than becoming a proper lady as her abusive mother demands, Isabelle would prefer to ride horses with her soulmate Felix, collect “rocks and animal skulls,” and practice her swordplay. Abandoned by Felix and without other prospects, down two toes by her own hand, and with her family fortune dwindling, she faces a bleak future. Then, meddlesome Chance steals the map of her life from the Fates and grants Isabelle the opportunity to revamp her destiny, and a fairy queen tasks her with finding the missing pieces of her broken heart in exchange for a wish. The story offers plenty of adventure as one of the Fates, Chance, and the queen of the fairies battle wills, and Isabelle confronts precarious situations as she becomes involved in a war between France and an evil warlord. Focusing on beauty’s many guises, what contributes to hatred and cruelty, and people’s power to take charge of their destinies, the retold fairy tale advocates autonomy and empowerment. Ages 12–up. Agent: Steven Malk, Writers House. (May)
			 --Staff (Reviewed 03/11/2019) (Publishers Weekly, vol 266, issue 10, p)
  • An ugly stepsister gets her own story in this twist on “Cinderella.” The beautiful and kindhearted Ella’s foot fits perfectly into the prince’s glass slipper, leaving her stepsisters, Isabelle and Octavia de la Paumé, with their cruel mother, ostracized in a village that has branded them as cruel after trying to deny Ella her chance at happily-ever-after. But cruelty often masks a broken heart. Eighteenth-century France is no place for bold girls like Isabelle, who is inspired by great warriors, or for unabashedly brilliant girls like Octavia, who admires great mathematicians and scientists. Isabelle is an unwitting pawn in a wager between Chance and Fate to stop a vicious warlord who is cutting a murderous swath through France, but a fairy queen makes her a tantalizing offer. Donnelly’s (Beauty and the Beast: Lost in a Book, 2017, etc.) gorgeous prose doesn’t shy away from the visceral: In the horrifying opening scene, which mirrors the Brothers Grimm original, Isabelle cuts off her own toes and Octavia slices off her heel to fit into the glass slipper, and the final battle scene is a corker. Isabelle’s emotional and triumphant journey of self-realization proves that beauty can be found in so much more than just a pretty face. Chance has dark skin and black hair; other main characters default to white. A breathlessly exciting and utterly satisfying fairy tale. (Fantasy. 12-18) (Kirkus Reviews, March 15, 2019)
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/bookUI
10780478
Cataloging source
NJQ/DLC
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Donnelly, Jennifer
Dewey number
  • [Fic]
  • 813.6
  • Fic
Index
no index present
LC call number
PZ7.D7194
LC item number
St 2019
Literary form
fiction
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/minGradeLevel
  • 9
  • 12
http://library.link/vocab/resourcePreferred
True
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • Cinderella (Tale)
  • Stepsisters
  • Fate and fatalism
  • Choice (Psychology)
  • Self-actualization (Psychology)
  • Women heroes
  • Characters in literature
  • Stepsisters
  • Fate and fatalism
  • Choice (Psychology)
  • Self-actualization (Psychology)
  • Beauty, Personal
  • Heroes
  • Choice (Psychology)
  • Cinderella (Tale)
  • Fate and fatalism
  • Self-actualization (Psychology)
  • Stepsisters
  • Women heroes
  • JUVENILE FICTION / General
Target audience
adolescent
Label
Stepsister, Jennifer Donnelly
Instantiates
Publication
Copyright
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Dimensions
22 cm
Edition
First edition.
Extent
342 pages
Isbn
9781338268461
Lccn
2019003322
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
System control number
(OCoLC)1084620768
Label
Stepsister, Jennifer Donnelly
Publication
Copyright
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Dimensions
22 cm
Edition
First edition.
Extent
342 pages
Isbn
9781338268461
Lccn
2019003322
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
System control number
(OCoLC)1084620768

Library Locations

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      148 Pylant Street, Senoia, GA, 30276, US
      33.297709 -84.561283

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