Cover Image: Charming

Charming

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Member Reviews

This was a fun retelling of Cinderella! I loved seeing how the fairytale might play out from a queer perspective.
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I really wanted to love this modern twist on a beloved Fairytale but I just could not get in to the story. I just couldn't connect- maybe I will try again later...
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I read this after reading Cinders and I loved reading the story from Char's point of view. I wish SendLove was a real app. The ending was really cute and I like how Ash and Char make each other better people. I would love to read more books by this author!
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Charming is the second part to Mette Bach's book Cinders. Charming picks up where Cinders leaves off throughout the book, providing the point of view of Char - Ash's love interest. Char is an aspiring musician just starting to figure out the her strengths and weaknesses in a media driven world. I was provided an e-ARC from Lorimer Children & Teens via NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.

I'll be honest, this review was a bit hard to write. I really wanted to find a way to do justice to this story. So here it is, I'm going to lay it out: Cinders and Charming should be ONE BOOK. Apart, they are novellas, apart, Charming does not stand alone. Apart, Cinders is missing too much. Together, they are the fairtale sweet story that Bach was aiming to write. Charming has all the sweetness and magical feeling that Cinders lacks. Cinders has all the bones of a story that Charming lacks. Together they are an incredibly sweet LGBT teen romance that the genre definitely needs.

Char is a self absorbed darling. She's not deliberately mean, but she's lost in her own world. There's a very sweet carelessness about her that is realistic. Who doesn't fall into the trap of sending a message and realizing it won't be read the way you meant it to be. That she knows the most basic part of herself, her sexuality, and is sure enough of it to not have fallen for the 'nice guy best friend that keeps trying' trap is a solid character type that I appreciate. However, there's a certain point where keeping him around as a friend is super weird, especially the way he talks to her in the book.

Unfortunately background characters are even  more flat in this book than in Cinders. While Char sees Mimi as her enemy, her rival, Mimi is completely flat with no character layers. Even more, Char talks about having talked with her friends, but the only friend that's mentioned is the guy who keeps telling her he loves her. To be honest, he sucks as a character.

I appreciate that I liked this a lot more than Cinders, but this is not a stand alone book. Had I read it on it's own, I wouldn't really know or follow the story line.
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This book is a fun read and I love that the author has a companion book that tells the story from the other person's part of view. They are both super cute books to read for both teens and adults.
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Same as with Cinders, the writing in this book felt flat and the way the sentences were made frustrated me. It’s really not a series that I enjoyed.
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The companion novel to <i>Cinders, Charming</i> by Mette Bach focuses on the alternate point of view of the love interest in this Cinderella story retelling. Another hi/lo title, this book seeks to increase interest and confidence in young readers who have struggled by appealing to common interests of today's teenager and using easy to read language. I am one hundred percent on board with the concept and hope that having books like these out in the published world will help a variety of kids really begin to enjoy reading and improve their skills. I can't say how often this will happen for kids seeking out books on their own, but at the end of the day it's still a wonderful idea.

I definitely liked <i>Cinders </i>much more than <i>Charming </i>largely, I believe, due to the fact that Char's thought process was not one I could identify with all that much. I appreciated her love for music and found her focus on the negative feedback on her videos very realistic, but at times I felt somewhat annoyed by her. Add in the fact that she later belittles education--something her counterpart did not do in her novel--by suggesting that she doesn't need to attend college due to her dream of succeeding as a musician and this book was pretty much ruined for me.

I have a <i>huge</i> problem with this. And while Char's parents are portrayed as awful people for refusing to give her the money they set aside for her college tuition in order to afford an apartment/house situation with her girlfriend, I found myself siding with them. If my child wanted to throw away the money set aside for their education, I'd be pretty infuriated, too. Now, I'm not saying that putting down someone's dreams is the way to go, but it is never okay to throw away education opportunities. Char could have still attended college, she could have even gone and majored in music. But the idea that it's okay to throw away tuition money and refuse to go to college is not one I am even remotely okay with promoting. I'm sure Ash, who had to fight tooth and nail for her scholarship, wouldn't appreciate the fact that Char had every opportunity and decided not to use it. 

And it is for that reason alone that my suggestion would be to skip this book entirely and read only <i>Cinders</i>.

<i>I received a free copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. </i>
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So, this book was written as a book that’s supposed to be quick moving and easy to read, so non-readers could get more into reading. Knowing this, I probably shouldn’t have requested it, but queer Cinderella? I had to. This was definitely not the type of writing i like, at all. But i think it’d be a good addition to a school library.
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