An Atomic Moo Book Review of Sarah Pinborough’s Wicked Fairy Tale
A short time after reviewing Sarah Pinborough’s Snow White based fairy tale (Poison) I was offered the chance to review the follow up novel, Charm (published by Titan Books, 2013). “Sure,” I thought. “Let’s see what horrible stuff happens to Cinderella, this time.” Which (after having read Poison) is a totally justified thought, and in no way a negative judgement of the last novel. I enjoyed Poison (the book) very much. Maybe too much (c’mon; I’m a guy and it was mostly sex and abuse, which I didn’t think was a turn on, but my therapist says… anyways…), but the fact is; Things did not go well for Snow White in the last book. So it was only right to assume Cinderella was due her turn. However; Pinborough showed her amazing talent as a writer by surprising readers with a wonderful new spin on this very old fairy tale.
In Charm, Cinderella isn’t so much a subjugated servant of a vindictive step mother, and her nasty daughters, as she is a lower middle class daughter with mostly lower middle class chores. Also, the evil step sisters are reduced to mostly just one step sister, and she’s not so much evil as she is practical. However; Cinderella is tired of the drudgery of life and desires to go to fancy balls, meet handsome princes, and basically have the fairy tale life. Which would never happen if not for the help of her fairy godmother (aka: Snow Whites evil step mother) who gives Cinderella the glass slippers that will charm (no pun… or at least unintended) her way into the kingdom’s one percent and an engagement to the handsome prince. The same prince who (in true creep fashion) is keeping a frozen Snow White locked away somewheres in his vast castle.
Much like I said in my previous review of Poison; Pinbrough’s stories are dark, brilliant, and chuck full of wonderful surprises. Her stories have a modern feel, without losing the classic fairy tell elements. Yeah, Cinderella has a tough time in this book (though, I think her step sister has it quite a bit worst), but her journey was new and the outcome unexpected. Also, I enjoyed the end of the book. I won’t spoil it, but once again; I’m a guy, and Snow White’s resolution was kind of frigg’n awesome. yeah… Anyways; (where was I?) Constantly being surprised is the best part of reading Pinbrough’s novels, and though readers should expect a lot of fun humor, erotisism, a engaging characters, they should mostly look forward to stories that surprise and leave them wanting more. Seriously, great ending for Snow White. We got to get this made into a movie…
Charm is available in all major book stores or you can get your copy online at Titanbooks.com!