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The Ugly Stepsister 

By: Aya Ling
Narrated by: Luci Christian
Length: 11 hrs and 42 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (167 ratings)
Regular price: $24.95
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Publisher's Summary

What if you are trapped in a fairy tale book?

When Kat accidentally rips apart an old childhood picturebook, she's magically transported into the world of Cinderella - as Katriona, one of the ugly stepsisters! To get back, she'll have to complete the story, right to the end of happily ever after. But the odds are huge: The other stepsister is movie-star gorgeous, the fairy godmother is nowhere to be found, and the prince isn't interested in balls at all. Can she ever return to the real world?

Cover Design by Clarissa at Yocla Designs

©2015 Aya Ling (P)2016 Audible, Inc.

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

A cute story but I feel a bit robbed and confused

******SPOILERS********
I understand that I am an adult who is reading a young adult novel and that alone may influence how I feel about the ending but I am disappointed. The story was engaging and interesting and the heroine was a very likeable character. I even was pulling for her the entire time to fall in love with the Prince but once I got what I wanted in the ending, the author immediately stole it away from us.

The main character Kat gets sucked into a story book and becomes one of Cinderella's step-sisters. She alone knows that this is a book and is tasked with making the entire story come true with very little help and none of the plot set up for her in advance. She works hard at social reform and in the process catches the eye of the prince. Long story short, she falls in love with him and he loves her in return. They marry and as soon as they say " I do" she goes back to her world. I was angry about this. I had a feeling that no time would have passed in the real world once she completed the story but I was hoping that she would actually get to live out the life she planned with the man she loved enough to marry and actually get to retain those memories when she returned. (Sort of like in the lion the witch and the wardrobe when the kids grew old and lived their lives in the other world but still returned as children once they were done) But no. She said I do and was instantly kicked out of the world that contained the man she loved and sent back to her world again to get a date with a cute guy?? That was my consolation prize?? A date with a cute boy after she spent over a year falling in love and planning a life with a man!!

I was just not happy with the last chapter. I feel like it ruined a wonderful book that I didn't want to put down. I'm afraid to read the next book because what if the next people fall in love and forget each other again. My heart can't take it. The story said "...and they lived happily ever after" after the wedding but Kat didn't get to experience or remember any of it. So what about her husband Edward? Did he experience the happily ever after or did his wife's personality change instantly after they married and Kat was sucked back to reality. Or did he cease to exist once the one real person left? And if he did cease to exist, why would she knowingly kill him off by marrying him? ugh!!! I am so frustrated and confused.

Read up to the part that he asks her to marry him and then stop. You will be happier imaging your own ending. 😒

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Loved it

Hope the next one comes out soon. Absolutely loved this book!!! It's a must read.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Enjoyable!!!

Got this on my Kindle Unlimited in audio. I had loaded it a few days ago for when I finished series I was reading until other book I wanted was released. The story was so well done and engaging in couldn't turn it off. I listened to it straight through. I highly recommend!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Amazing!

This book was amazing and I couldn't put it down. It's totally kept my attention from beginning to end! I loved every minute and didn't want it to end! I can't want to read book two!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Just ok, a superficial and idealistic teen flick

What did you like best about The Ugly Stepsister ? What did you like least?

This is your typical whimsical and inspirational girly flick. I liked how the author tried to make the world and to establish Kat as a “strong, independent, modernized woman.” However, it’s too fantastical and just unrealistic. Yea, I know it’s fiction and Kat gets sucked inside a fairytale book but the author tries real hard to make the world, at best, historically accurate. There’s the typical doing visiting calls, going to shops, embroidery every day shtick woman of olden days went through. That stuff I could believe, the serious stuff they get into later, I just rolled my eyes.

*spoilers ahead*














The whole child labor and fixing the law to avoid children dying or getting injured was definitely ideal, not just in Kat’s world but in real history. However, Kat’s world did not draw out the negative consequences. Supposedly kids work to get money and they do 16 hours a day or so. Kat essentially makes a new law saying kids should work 8 hours. It doesn’t pass the first time through parliament but that’s expected. Yet, it gets majority vote the next time. Ok, perhaps with good momentum and campaigning, that could happen. BUT I expected some backlash from the business owners. Not some flippant or weak backlash but pure anger and even hatred. The evil mob mentality thing. If I was a business owner at the time, supporting child labor and not caring if children die in my service, I would fight the amendment. Harsh business owners would rally other harsh business owners and cause trouble for those who made the new amendment. THIS drama, in my opinion, is the good stuff that really identifies the heroes and villains. To continue, the class divide is apparently prevelant during this time period of the book too. Rich people don’t care about poor people, especially kids. The book says royalty has no real power either so most likely, the rich dominates parliament. If a new bill threatens your wealth and income, essentially your livelihood, there would be negative consequences. That’s just how life works!
In addition, there is no mentioning how less hours would affect the pay of the children. Do they get less wages since they’re working less? Is the 8 hour work day even possible to support a whole family? Essentially, Kat wants no kid to work but how in the hell will that help poor families survive? The kids work their butts off to help their families so if you strip them of their jobs completely with no mention of any support system, you’re making everything worse!

Another thing I had trouble with was Kat’s idea of marriage. Historically speaking, yes, eloping would cause scandal and shame. Being such an avid reader, Kat should’ve realized it wasn’t just a small thing but it was a very, VERY serious matter. She even references Pride and Prejudice a couple times and in that book, Lydia’s elopement was HUGE. It could’ve affected the marriage changes of the other Bennet girls and ruined the family. Why? Scandals ruin reputation and if you wanted to marry up into the world, you don’t want everybody gossiping about your family. Marrying down in the world can even lead to social ostracism because of class divide. The book leans too heavily on modern ideas when it is set in a not-modern world that valued reputation, avoided scandals, and (again) had a predominant class divide. Kat treated Poppy’s elopement idealistically and she should’ve expected some sort of punishment. When Lady Bradshaw “grounded” Kat to her room—rather tame punishment if you ask me—Kat was melodramatic and all teen angst. Her defense against running away from home was “I wrote a note.” Wow, what a “strong” heroine we have here. Even the prince supporting the elopement was far fetched. Him doing that would encourage Kat to dirty her own reputation for supporting the elopement and that could’ve caused the King and Queen to reject her as a daughter in law. At best, they would’ve disapproved of her. Remember, class divide! Reputation! The toffs and their belief they’re better than everyone else! History!!!



I understand the author’s intent with the story but it falls flat, oh sooo flat, with the consequences. If you can overlook those flaws, then this book is your typical teen Disney-esque book with lots and lots of youthful ideals, hopes, and dreams. But if you want a down to earth realistic rendition of Cinderella, like this book intended, this isn’t the book for you. Heck, that Australian transfer student in the beginning lost his accent at the end of the book so if you’re expecting consistency, then look elsewhere.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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AMAZING

this book was absolutely amazing
must read for anyone who cherishes a good fairy tale!

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars

Disappointed Stepsister

I love fiction based on fantasy, but this attempt didn't come close. It was a bit "herky-jerky" for a Cinderella story. Keep trying!

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Surprised me in a lot of ways!

4.5 stars — Wow. I didn’t expect to cry as much as I did at the end. I think it was all the anxiety over how it was going to end. But damn…I was seriously sucked in and attached to Kat and Edward. It was such a strange tug of war between what I wanted to happen, and what I knew had to happen. Ms. Ling somehow made it work, though I’m still unsettled. Which is making me intrigued about the rest of the series.

This one wasn’t the straightforward retelling I was expecting! And I loved that! I mean, I knew it would veer off course, but it’s amazing how many little pieces of other stories I felt like I encountered. And Kat referenced modern movies and books all the time! Sometimes it got to be a bit much, but it also felt authentic for a 17 year old girl.

Seriously though, I couldn’t have predicted all the places this story would take me, all the topics it would tackle. It was a lot more involved, and it got into some deep issues from that kind of society. I loved the stuff with Jimmy and the causes that Kat stood behind, and of course her friendship with Poppy and helping her out.

Occasionally I felt like Kat was kind of naive and oblivious to some pretty obvious clues. I’m not sure how I feel about that, because she comes across as a smart cookie, yet she would overlook the most obvious of details. But on the whole I loved how sassy Kat was, how she stood strong with her convictions, and how she wouldn’t be bullied.

I kind of loved the romance between Kat and Edward…it was *really* subtle, and not necessarily a prominent part of the plot, but it reminded me of the romance in the movie Ever After.

There were all sorts of crazy side characters in this one, and they all brought something interesting to the table. From Elle, Henry, Jimmy, Poppy, Bertram, Mr. Wellsley, Martha, Kreve (no idea on spelling since I listened to it), Lady Gregory, Lysander, and Meg…damn, there was a lot going on. So many tiny side offshoot stories that either helped or distracted Kat in her journey to the HEA.

I really enjoy Ms. Christian’s narration in general… She’s so lively and just provides the perfect voice for Kat. Her voices were pretty good, even the accents were okay since we were in a fictional world, so they didn’t have to be something real. I found she occasionally pronounced things in a different way than I thought they should be, but that could be a me-being-a-Canadian thing.

So yeah. This one surprised me in a lot of ways, and I’m totally going to be listening to the next one!

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Unsatisfying ending

I actually really like this story, right up until the end. The author pulls you into this story with these characters you grow to love, then “poof”, takes it all away. I’m going to read the next book because I’m hoping it will help pull things back together.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

The Greatest Retelling of Cinderella

PLOT - Kat accidentally rapes a book apart. She transports inside the book. She got suck in Katriona body. She has to gave a happy end for the Prince and Cinderella. But not the end she fell in love with the Prince. I really love retelling of fairytales. This tell you about one of Cinderella ugly sister. Kat is the ugly sister. I loved the narrate. She really did great tell this story.

#Relationships #Retelling #Royal #Fairytale #Magical #Fantasy #tagsgiving and #sweepstakes