In today’s review post, I have the pleasure to share my thoughts on a unique fairytale retelling that held my attention throughout. Cinderella’s Crimes is loosely based on the classic fairytale, but quickly deviates and develops a world of its own.
What’s more exciting is that I have the privilege of sharing my thoughts on the book’s re-publication day; it was originally released under the title Pretty Deadly. I hope you are as excited for this book as I am to tell you about it. Let’s check out the details of the book and then dive into my review!
Cinderella’s Crimes – Kelsey Josund
Genre: Fairytale Retelling
Audience: Young Adult
Publisher: Kelsey Josund
Publication Date: 31 Oct 2023
Cinna would quite literally kill for the throne.
For years, Cinna has been forced to serve her wealthy cousins rather than attend society events alongside them. She has waited for the chance to prove herself and exact revenge. When a ball at the castle is announced, promising to bring many powerful people to town, she seizes the opportunity to strike.
She bets her best friend, Johann, a small-time thief and con-man, that she can land a greater score the night of the ball than he can, and they embark on parallel heists. But as their plots unfold, things begin to unravel: by the end of the night, the castle’s on lock down, a duchess is dead, a mansion has burnt to the ground—and Cinna hasn’t even stolen anything.
Or has she captured something far more valuable than gold and jewels?
A complex heist is the feature of this retelling, and it far surpassed my expectation in details and intrigue. There is no way I had anticipated the events that unfold in the book; it is a real page-turner! If you are a follower of my blog and keep up with my weekly Sunday Summary updates, you will know that I read Cinderella’s Crimes in just a handful of days earlier this month. If that doesn’t prove my point, then I don’t know what does!
Regardless of the intricacies, the plot is easy to follow and engaging to the reader. The narrative is also full of plot twists, with us not knowing what will happen next at any given moment.
Who scores the greatest haul on the night? Well, I’m not going to tell you that! You’ll just have to read the book for yourself!
Cinna, unlike her fairytale counterpart, is a cold and calculating individual. Subjected to a fall of grace in her family as a result of mistreatment by her stepmother and step-siblings, she plots her revenge every day. In order to break out of her desperate circumstances, she plans the most daring of heists, and sets herself against her friend Johann in scoring the greatest haul on the night. Cinna is a complex character and a fun perspective to enjoy this story from.
Johann is also an interesting counterpart to Cinna. Like Cinna, he is far from altruistic, and this isn’t his first criminal venture. It’s by far the biggest yet, however, and he rises to the challenge! With little time to prepare, Johann is incredibly resourceful and determined to best Cinna, even though he suspects deep down she’ll trump him. He’s determined pull it off anyway.
The dynamic between the two adds intrigue to an already high stakes story. I enjoyed their complicated relationship at every stage of the book.
The short and concise chapters make this already compulsively readable story even easier to read.
The chapters intertwine between Johann and Cinna’s perspective, combining two different angles of the heist into one comprehensive story. As these two seemingly separate parts come together into the full picture, we’re surprised by how their daring endeavours unravel in tandem.
Cinderella’s Crimes is a dark twist to a classic fairytale with high stakes, daring adventure, and a shot at revenge that is best served cold!
Are you intrigued by Cinderella’s Crimes? Would you like to read it for yourself?