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All the Ever Afters: The Untold Story of Cinderella’s Stepmother Hardcover – Deckle Edge, May 22, 2018
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The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
“As in the best literary inversions (e.g., Gregory Maguire’s Wicked), Teller demonstrates the flaws and fine points of characters on both sides.” (Washington Post)
“[A] charmed debut [....] Teller pulls off the spellbinding trick of turning an easy-to-hate character into a strong and conscientious female lead.” (Publishers Weekly)
“Teller’s reimagined tale. . .stands out among the best. . . . Fairy-tale aficionados will adore Teller’s complex, touching retelling of this classic story of womanhood, perseverance, and familial love, in which she strikes an ideal balance between familiar and fresh.” (Booklist (starred review))
“Teller’s novel is a powerfully written rendition of the Cinderella story… Tells a complex tale of a love that forms through patient nurturing and by just being present.” (Book Club Babble)
“Teller woos readers into taking a better, more open-eyed look at a character that’s been maligned for centuries, one with strength and who’s worthy of stunned sympathy.” (Guam Daily Post)
“A fascinating reimagining of the original tale. . . .Readers will feel empathy for Agnes, consider various misunderstandings and think twice before labeling her as wicked.” (Associated Press)
Sometimes you’ve only heard one part of the story. Cinderella’s famously maligned stepmother, Agnes, gets to tell her own side in this clever take on the fairy tale.” (New York Post)
About the Author
Danielle Teller received her medical training at McGill University, Brown University, and Yale University. She has held faculty positions at the University of Pittsburgh and Harvard University. In 2013, Danielle pursued her childhood dream of being a writer. She is the author of one book of nonfiction, Sacred Cows: The Truth About Divorce and Marriage, and has written numerous columns for Quartz. She lives with her husband, Astro Teller, and their four children in Palo Alto, California. All the Ever Afters is her first novel.
Top customer reviews
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It reminded me of THE PILLARS OF THE EARTH by Ken Follett. This book focuses on the lives of *women*, though, which made it really interesting, and in many ways much more heartfelt than other very good historical fiction.
No spoilers here, but I will say that this author is very clever in how she addresses some of the elements from the fairy tale -- when she points out some really obviously nonsensical parts of the fairy-tale plot, you may feel what I did -- "wow, why did I never question that before?".
I do love fairy tales, and I didn't feel this book diminished or ruined the Cinderella story at all. It actually felt as if this is the way the Cinderella story *must* have happened -- this realistic, solid tale seems far more compelling than some downtrodden powerless girl clutching a slipper and weeping into the ashes. Also, this book goes BEYOND the fairy tale -- well before it, and even afterward, so you really do feel totally satisfied. I much prefer this story to the fairy tale. The ending is truly wonderful.
It's a fun read -- a good plot -- but there's depth here too. The story brings up a lot of interesting questions that are really relevant today--for example, about how society values appearance so much over character at times, and how facts often get distorted for entertainment/gossip purposes -- so this is a great choice for a book club, or a book to read along with your teen. Some themes/events might be a little mature for the very young. Older teens will probably really like this book. I would say 14 or 15 years old and over.
The book is so pretty too (the cover is even more gorgeous in person than online, and the inside has all kinds of little decorations on the pages to set apart scenes and chapters etc) that it will make a very nice gift. I have bought a couple more copies for that purpose!
If you like historical fiction...if you like fairy tales... if you like good storytelling and real-seeming characters that you will care about and root for... I really recommend this book!
In essence, a perfectly honed tool to tell a very good story.
The tale is an old and cherished one, that of Cinderella. But wait, it’s not at all what you would expect. It is the other side of the story, a visit to the dark side of the moon. This doesn’t mean the content is dark, because it is full of hope and love. But it is also steeped in very real human experiences and events. It clearly comes from a writer who has lived a meaningful life and has developed a deep understanding. I will not spoil your pleasure by saying more about the plot. Let me add that the ambient details are carefully researched and deftly described so that you find yourself immersed in a time and place different from your own, yet familiar, because the description makes it so.
Finally, a warning. You won’t be able to put the book down. I started reading it and could not stop even though I wasn’t supposed to strain my eyes after a minor surgery. I read through, fatigued eyes notwithstanding, until I reached the very last word.
We all know the tale, but Teller brings new insights, and surprises us on every turn. The language is eloquent, the period setting is live and colorful.
REALLY ENJOYED IT!
Most recent customer reviews
Kevin Cullen's review Feb 05, 2018 · edit
it was amazing
Read 2 times. Last read February 5, 2018 to February 10, 2018.Read more