by Lynn Collum

April 2003
ISBN: 0-8217-7292-9
Reviewer Graphic Button Zebra Books
Mass Market Paperback

Yes, it is a Cinderella themed romance and it does provide an original and entertaining take on it.

Gabriel Crowe, Earl of Shalford, needs to marry or lose his financial support from his father. So he returns to Surrey to find himself a wife. There he comes across Miss Ella Sanderson.

Ella is orphaned and lives as poor relation in her auntís household. Instead of scrubbing the floors, sheís sent to look after her uncle in a nearby cottage. The unlikely fairy godmother comes in his form. Ella is an excellent cook and when one day Lady Latimer happens to taste one of her pastries she invites Ella to cook for the ball sheís holding for her son, Gabriel.

Unable to find a slipper that fits, Ella is not only losing one but several. Same story, differently told. With an assortment of interesting secondary characters I had to struggle sometimes to keep them straight. And for a short historical it took a little too long for them to meet for the first time.

Itís an entertaining read, well done in its retelling of this popular fairy tale, and I did like the characters, but had problems seeing or feeling them falling in love. I could believe them to be in awe and in lust, but falling head over heels I didnít see, I only got told about it. There just werenít any sparks flying.

Reviewed in June 2003 by Kris Alice.

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