Review: Ella Enchanted (Gail Carson Levine)


Once I finished reading 1984, I felt like I needed something that would be easier to read, preferably with a lot of happy moments, and definitely a happy ending. So I looked at my shelves, and my recently purchased, brand new copy of Ella Enchanted (with extras!) was staring back at me. This was possibly the easiest what-to-read-next decision I’ve ever made.

Some confessions: I actually have a copy of this book in Indonesian that has to be at least 10 years old, if not older. I don’t think I’ve ever read it through. Strangely enough, I never saw the movie either, and for some reason it never occurred to me that this book is a retelling of Cinderella! I only started to wonder about it being a retelling of Cinderella when Ella and Char find the glass slippers. Ho-hum. That’s a good thing though, because it shows how original this retelling actually is.

I must say the back cover was a bit misleading though, for a while there when Ella went on her journey, I thought that was going to be it, that she’ll go through ONE adventure and eventually reach her goal. Not so, and that’s what makes this book even more awesome. It’s a wonderful blend of fantasy and real-world-truths. Ella herself, as many reviews on the web would tell you, is a strong and very likeable character.

The use of the fairy book as a means to convey things that would otherwise not be known to the reader (since the book was written in first person, Ella’s point of view) was an interesting literary device, although I was a bit annoyed with the fact that the book always shows exactly what is needed but is otherwise very random. I had some other minor complains but I suppose that’s mainly because I’m reading it as an adult. Haha.

Oh, one more thing. It’s really cool how Ms. Levine made up so many different languages (and in my copy of the book there was a dictionary! Ha!) although I would’ve liked it even more if the languages were easier to read/pronounce. That being said, I’m adding all other works by Ms. Levine to my TBR list because I’m sure they’re just as good.

Ella Enchanted Book Cover Ella Enchanted
Gail Carson Levine
232 pages

How can a fairy's blessing be such a curse?

At her birth, Ella of Frell was given a foolish fairy's gift--the "gift" of obedience. Ella must obey any order given to her, whether it's hopping on one foot for a day or chopping off her own head!

But strong-willed Ella does not tamely accept her fate. She goes on a quest, encountering ogres, giants, wicked stepsisters, fairy godmothers, and handsome princes, determined to break the curse--and live happily ever after.


If I had my way, I’d spend the rest of my days at the corner of a coffee shop, reading, writing, and talking to the one I love.

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