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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
We all know one version of the Cinderella story. A young girl, abused and harassed by her step-family, has a once-in-a-lifetime experience, attending the royal ball and capturing the eye of the prince. Love blossoms, as it should in a happily-ever-after fairy tale. But there may be another side to the story. The fairy godmother might be a man or a family friend, not a magical female creature. In Small Feet by Aelth Faye the special glass slippers, one of which was lost at the ball might also fit someone else’s feet. If that other person, in this case, Jade, decides her life is boring and unproductive, she might decide to continue the ruse, wear the glass slipper, and be the one the prince will marry. Jade’s a good person and like Ella, she aspires to do what is right and honest. Her deception haunts her, especially when the prince’s friend challenges her claim.
Aelth Faye’s novella Small Feet is an inspiring and entertaining rewrite of the classic fairy tale, Cinderella. Unlike the original, this fairy tale follows Jade’s story - the other girl with small feet. Told mostly in narrative style, like any classic fairy tale, the plot develops as it describes the main characters, mainly Jade, but also Ella. The royal ball turns out to be a series of balls, rather than the one in the original, and as the romance develops, Jade, the introverted bookworm, seeks solace in the quiet corners after doing her due diligence of dancing with a few eligible men to appease her mother. Honesty and integrity and the true beauty of a strong woman ring true in this charming rewrite. The first of many fairy tale rewrites, this is one you don’t want to miss.