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DEAR CINDERELLA by Mary Jane Kensington

DEAR CINDERELLA

By Marian Moore (Author) , Mary Jane Kensington (Author) , Julie Olson (Illustrator)

Age Range: 4 - 7

Pub Date: Feb. 1st, 2012
ISBN: 978-0-545-34220-9
Publisher: Orchard/Scholastic

Cinderella and Snow White engage in vapid correspondence.

If these two fairy-tale characters lived in modern times and wrote in the voices of preteen girls, they might sound like these letters. Given that they use phrases like “Yippee!” and “Best friends forever” and ending with a double wedding, readers’ suspension of all previous knowledge of these iconic tales is critical. Would either of these despised stepdaughters have been able to read and write? How would the letters have been delivered to different kingdoms so speedily? How would they have known about each other? Readers familiar with the traditional tales will have many arguments with the structure. (For example, Snow White would not have been invited into the cottage by a “sweet little man… to stay and be safe,” and Cinderella was never thought to be perpetually happy in her servitude.) With illustrations in a coloring-book style with dark outlines and Disney-like clothing, young readers will probably recognize all the scenes from repeated viewings of those movies. Reading more like a school assignment than a story (“Pretend Cinderella and Snow White are pen pals”), this one is only for children who love the movies and other pink princess books utterly uncritically.

Even the glittery cover can’t save Cinderella and Snow White from this treatment. (Picture book. 4-7)