Ella Enchanted

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

At her birth, Ella of Frell was the unfortunate recipient of 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 and a half, or chopping off her own head! But strong-willed Ella does not tamely accept her fate. Against a bold backdrop of princes, ogres, giants, wicked stepsisters, and fairy godmothers, Ella goes on a quest to break the curse — once and for all.

In this incredible debut novel comes the richly entertaining story of Ella of Frell, who at birth was given the gift of obedience by a fairy. Ella soon realizes that this gift is little better than a curse, for how can she truly be herself if at anytime anyone can order her to hop on one foot, or cut off her hand, or betray her kingdom’and she’ll have to obey? Against a bold tapestry of princes, ogres, giants, wicked stepsisters, and fairy godmothers, Ella’s quest to break the curse once and for all and discover who she really is is as sharply funny as Catherine, Called Birdy and as richly poignant as Beauty, and has all the marks of a classic in the making.

Ella Enchanted was one of my favorite books growing up.  The characters were believable and likable, the setting entrancing and clever writing.  So what could be done to destroy this story into a dumbed down monstrosity like all those I imagine.

Lets modernize the setting.  Yes, modern sensibilities in a medieval world sounds great.  Her father’s character is far to complex, so let’s make him a doting old bumpkin, and since the same complexity problem exists in every other character, let’s explain Mandy’s refusal to use “big magic” by taking away her ability to do so, give the book a face and personality, turn Lucinda into a ditzy brat, and even add in an evil uncle because suddenly the one dimensional characters are boring.

And then turn everything into a bizarre political situation where ogres are friendly, all non-humans are oppressed, and the entire plot happens in less than a week.  And there’s random musical numbers.

Oh wait, that’s what was on the television when I woke up.

Please excuse me as I bang my head against the wall.

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