Stepsister by Jennifer Donnelly

‘In an ancient city by the sea, three sisters – a maiden, a mother, and a crone – are drawing maps by candlelight. Sombre, with piercing grey eyes, they are the three Fates, and every map is a human life . . .’

Stepsister takes up where Cinderella’s tale ends. We meet Isabelle, the younger of Cinderella’s two stepsisters. Ella is considered beautiful; stepsister Isabelle is not. Isabelle is fearless, brave, and strong-willed. She fences better than any boy, and takes her stallion over jumps that grown men fear to attempt. It doesn’t matter, though; these qualities are not valued in a girl. Others have determined what is beautiful, and Isabelle does not fit their definition. Isabelle must face down the demons that drove her cruel treatment of Ella, challenge her own fate and maybe even redefine the very notion of beauty . . .

Cinderella is about a girl who was bullied; Stepsister is about the bully. We all root for the victims, we want to see them triumph. But what about the bullies? Is there hope for them? Can a mean girl change? Can she find her own happily ever after?

This new look at a classic fairy tale revolves around a strong, flawed female lead character.  Moving, thought provoking, gruesome and compelling, this story “will resonate with readers who want to be valued for who they are, not what they look like.” [Sharon Rawlins, New Jersey State Library, Trenton. School Library Journal, vol 65, issue 4, p103]

Read more about the author, Jennifer Donnelly.

Listen to the B&N Teen Podcast with the author.

More books by this author available in the library:


[souces: Goodreads, Novelist]

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