A pretty but undistinguished rendition of the tale in six layered tableaux.
Opening to a more than 90-degree angle, each spread offers a multileveled stage setting framed with starry curtains, in which figures in 18th-century dress are posed amid elegant surroundings. Ray recycles the almond-eyed beauty and her dusky-skinned royal swain from the similarly designed Snow White (2009). Though the details of clothing and architecture are drawn with a fine precision, the same cannot be said of the figures—whose hands are consistently misshapen and whose features, particularly in the lead characters, have a remote, frozen look. The text, stripped down to a plot summary that allows the stepsisters to keep their feet unchopped and ends with Cinderella’s “Yes!” in response to the prince’s proposal, is hidden beneath flaps in the wings but will most likely be superfluous anyway.
Not entirely trite, as it does feature a biracial couple, but overall, a bland, phoned-in follow-up to a more successful previous outing. (Pop-up/fairy tale. 6-8)