I received this book via I Am a Reader. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of this review.Cinder & Ella by Kelly Oram
Series: Cinder & Ella #1
Published by Bluefields on 2014-10-01
Length: 269 pages
Reviewing eARC from I Am a Reader
It’s been almost a year since eighteen-year-old Ella Rodriguez was in a car accident that left her crippled, scarred, and without a mother. After a very difficult recovery, she’s been uprooted across the country and forced into the custody of a father that abandoned her when she was a young child. If Ella wants to escape her father’s home and her awful new stepfamily, she must convince her doctors that she’s capable, both physically and emotionally, of living on her own. The problem is, she’s not ready yet. The only way she can think of to start healing is by reconnecting with the one person left in the world who’s ever meant anything to her—her anonymous Internet best friend, Cinder.
Hollywood sensation Brian Oliver has a reputation for being trouble. There’s major buzz around his performance in his upcoming film The Druid Prince, but his management team says he won’t make the transition from teen heartthrob to serious A-list actor unless he can prove he’s left his wild days behind and become a mature adult. In order to douse the flames on Brian’s bad-boy reputation, his management stages a fake engagement for him to his co-star Kaylee. Brian isn’t thrilled with the arrangement—or his fake fiancée—but decides he’ll suffer through it if it means he’ll get an Oscar nomination. Then a surprise email from an old Internet friend changes everything.
So I’ve been on this kick recently reading books that are very similar to Hallmark movies…Cinder & Ella fits that description! It’s sweet, overly dramatic, and utterly predictable. It also leaves you with this ooey-gooey feeling like your insides have turned to mush. I kinda loved it!
On Ella Rodriguez’s 18th birthday her life changes dramatically. Her mother is killed in a car accident that leaves Ella recovering from her own injuries in a hospital for 8 months. She misses the end of her senior year of school, loses touch with all of her friends, and she is forced to live with her father, a man who left her when she was 10. Basically anything and everything that could happen to this poor girl does. Her only constant is Cinder, a boy she’s never met, an anonymous internet pen pal (for lack of better term).
Brian Oliver is Hollywood’s heart-throb and is labeled as possibly “the next big thing” if he can clean up his somewhat dismal reputation. His publicists come up with a plan, a terrible awful plan that had me screaming at my Kindle….a fake engagement with his co-star who happens to be a class-A B****! He goes along with the plan because he wants an Oscar nomination and well everyone pressures him too. Then he gets an email from his internet friend he believed was dead. Now everything changes!
This story is a sweet, loose re-telling of Cinderella. Ella is crippled from her accident, both emotionally and physically. She is forced to live with a father who abandoned her after her parents divorced and his new family, complete with step-mother and two evil step-twins. The step-twins make life for Ella difficult as they are threatened by her. Ella is now considered the ugly girl or at least she thinks she is. A lot of the story she struggles with the loss of her identity due to the crippling nature of her injuries and as most of the story comes from her own perspective I believe she sees what she wants (meaning that maybe not all the people looked at her as she looks at herself). Brian is the prince of the story and really he has a lot to live up to. Honestly though I thought he nailed it.
The basic premise of the story is that Ella now needs to cope with her new life, but she feels unable to do so, hindered by her own emotions towards her injuries. Cinder helps her through this and the book revolves around their will they/won’t they meet and fall in love. As I said, it’s sweet and very predictable, but charming and heart-warming all at the same time. The best part, it’s a fairly clean romance and fits both the New Adult and Young Adult genre 🙂 If you enjoy sweet, heart-warming romance, get a box of tissues and go read this book!