Tuesday, September 14, 2010

The Fairy Godmother by Mercedes Lackey

We have all heard the fairy tales where the Prince and Princess live happily ever after, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, Princess and the Pea and Rapunzel. Then there are also the tales where children are stolen from their beds, with changelings left in their place, or the grandmother being eaten by the big bad wolf. What we do not hear about is the tradition. The tradition is the all-powerful force that makes things happen, time after time, keeping the fairy tales repeating themselves repeatedly. It is a force that pushes and prods and creates opportunities or challenges that make things happen in just that certain way.

This is the story of one young woman born into the Five Hundred Kingdoms. All her life she has been worked hard, treated poorly and neglected by her Stepmother. She had become a virtual slave to her and her two stepdaughters as well. Well anyone knowing how the tradition works could see that this should have a happy ending. But as the years went on and Elena passed her eighteenth birthday all hope was lost. As her stepmother and stepsisters moved on one step ahead of the creditors, Elena was left on her own with nothing to her name.

Luckily, she was close to her neighbor’s, two older women who seemed to have just a little magic. So as the creditors came to strip the house of everything that was not nailed down she sat down for one of her first good meal in a long time. The elderly women fawned and petted over her, which gave her the courage to do what she felt she had to do. She needed to sell herself as a house cleaner and move on before her Stepmother and Stepsisters came back again to continue to make her life miserable. Off she goes to the town square where the mop fair is going on and jobs are offered each week, with her back straight and her hopes up. However, with each passing hour she began to lose hope. Not one to give up she stayed right were she was till the very end of day, knowing that it would just take that one person that would need what she had to offer and give her a job. As the day faded, away Elena started to head back to her empty home, and just as she did, she heard the carriage.

The cart that came around the corner was just as odd as the driver was, but the elderly woman had such kind eyes and Elena really needed a job. When the elderly woman asked her if she was looking for work, Elena jumped at the chance without even remembering to ask what the job was. It was so wonderful to find someone with such kind eyes. The woman invited her aboard the carriage and off they went. As they rounded the corner and lurched over a bump the carriage bounced into the air, and did not come down. Elena was terrified.

This is the Story of how Elena became the Fairy Godmother’s apprentice and then went on to become the Fairy Godmother of the Five Hundred Kingdoms. Even the Fey and magical creatures accepted her. She becomes the adored of the Unicorns, and if she still sometimes dreamed of meeting her prince, well no one ever knew for the longest time. She became a source to be reckoned with and helped to set up the questing for the young men trying to win the fair maiden. This is also the story of how she changed the Tradition and used it to build a strong and peaceful kingdom where only good would prevail. In addition, as luck, or the tradition would have it, could there still be a happily ever after for Elena?

This true adult fairytale with all the fun and enchantments that go with the tales we heard as a child. It is the story of believing in something with all your heart and finding that there really are happy endings. A fun read with likable characters. It may have been a little sugary but still had a very feel good ending.

Rating 4/5
This Book was received as a free book from Net galley. All opinions are my own based off my reading and understanding of the material. 
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Man of la Books said...

Wonderful review and seems like a great book. I posted it to my followers on Twitter under the hashmark #helpotherbookblogs

Maybe you can do the same for anther book blogger.


The Simple Jocabell Life said...

What a great review! I may have to pick this one up! I have been reading alot of reality based books and need a break from the usual!

TheBookGirl said...

I agree with the wonderful review comments! I don't read alot of fantasy, but your description makes me want to seek this one out...plus the cover is beautfiul :)