My Rating: ★★★☆☆
Can the fairy tale bring Charlotte the happiness she’s looking for, or was he always there to begin with?
A modern, re-imagined Cinderella story.
When aspiring author Charlotte Kingsley finally gets published, she thinks all her dreams have come true. But the trouble begins when her publicity firm reinvents her quirky online presence into a perfectly curated dream life. Gone are the days of sweatpant posts and ice cream binges with her best friend, Anders, replaced instead with beautiful clothes, orchestrated selfies, and no boyfriend. Only, that carefully curated fairy tale life is ruining her self-esteem and making her feel like a fraud.
When a bestselling author takes Charlotte under her wing—almost like a fairy godmother—she helps Charlotte see the beautiful person she already is and the worth of being authentic. But is it too late to save her relationship with Anders? The clock is quickly ticking towards midnight, and Charlotte must decide between her fairy tale life and the man she loves, before he’s gone forever.
ARC was provided by the publisher. This does not influence my opinion or review.
This book was not on my radar until I was contacted by the publisher and sent an ARC for review, but the moment I read the synopsis I knew that I had to read it. It sounded like such a cute and relatable story: aspiring published author experiences a modern-day Cinderella story where her dreams come true but not without some sort of consequences.
Things I Liked:
One of the main things I enjoyed about this book was how relatable it was. I was really surprised by how much I resonated with Lettie and her situation, especially with her less-than-ideal job versus the writing career of her dreams. Her determination and perseverance into getting her dream agent and finally starting a career as a published author was so inspiring to see. It might be because I, too, aspire to become a published author one day, but right from the beginning I resonated with Lettie. Despite being very unrealistic, it was fun seeing how her life changed the moment she signed her contract with her publisher and this whirlwind of a fairy tale started to come to life faster than Lettie anticipated.
I adored Lettie’s relationship with her step-sister Kat. Close sibling relationships – especially sisters – is one of my favorite things to see him books, probably because I’m really close with my own sister. I loved how Lettie was always watching out for Kat, but made sure to not coddle her too much either. Her relationship with her family was complicated, especially with her mother, but I actually really enjoyed that part of it because it felt more realistic.
Lettie is extremely lucky to have such a supportive best friend like Anders. In fact, I want a best friend just like him! He was sweet, driven, cares a great deal about his family, down-to-earth, and a talented photographer. The romance that develops between him and Lettie was definitely not Cinderella-meets-the-prince-at-the-ball type of relationship, but it was sweet and way more realistic. Huh, I’m noticing a theme here… 😉
Things I Disliked:
Despite a lot of the story being more realistic than the Cinderella-fairy-tale, there were still parts where I had to suspend my disbelief. I can’t vouch for every published author’s situation, but going off of what I know from doing my own research and from my author friends, Lettie’s situation just seemed too extravagant especially for the type of book she wrote and sold. Oh, and her agent, publicist, etc. were all forgettable and I kept accidentally interchanging them with each other.
In terms of the romance, I didn’t say much else besides it being sweet because… that’s all there was to it. It didn’t really evoke any sort of strong positive reaction from my other than, “Oh, that’s sweet/cute”. A major part of it might be that I felt the stakes just weren’t high enough. At no point in the story did I actually worry that Lettie and Anders weren’t going to work things out and end up together. Yes, all romance novels have happy endings (otherwise, it’s not a romance novel) but the really good ones make me worry for a few chapters, or at least agonize over trying to figure out how these two characters are going to work things out at the end. That just didn’t happen here.
Also, I honestly didn’t like Anders as much as I wanted to. He was great as a best friend: understanding, supportive, and encouraging. But once he became Lettie’s boyfriend all those traits started to change and I began to like him less and less.
Lastly, the whole “fairy godmother” aspect was so minimal that it may as well have been non-existent, just like how Lettie criticized in the beginning. I guess I was expecting for that to play a more prominent role in the story, but Lettie’s fairy-godmother didn’t really play that big of a role until the last quarter of the book and even then it wasn’t much.
Overall, Glass Slippers, Ever After, and Me was a fairly enjoyable read. The romance was okay, sweet and very tame. The most enjoyable parts were Lettie spending time with her sister Kat, and her whirlwind of an experience becoming a published author/carefully curated Instagram star – just be sure to suspend your disbelief.
About the Author:
Julie Wright is the author of more than twenty novels, including the Proper Romance® novels Lies Jane Austen Told Me and Lies, Love, and Breakfast at Tiffany’s. She is a Whitney Award winner and a Crown Heart recipient. She is represented by agent Sara Crowe. She loves reading and writing, playing on the beach or hiking with her husband and kids, and watching her husband make dinner.
What was the last book you read that was surprisingly relatable? Let me know in the comments!