Review: 'Fooling Around with Cinderella' by Stacy Juba (2015)
What happens when the glass slippers pinch Cinderella’s toes? When Jaine Andersen proposes a new marketing role to the local amusement park, general manager Dylan Callahan charms her into filling Cinderella’s glass slippers for the summer. Her reign transforms Jaine’s ordinary life into chaos that would bewilder a fairy godmother. Secretly dating her bad boy boss, running wedding errands for her ungrateful sisters, and defending herself from the park’s resident villain means Jaine needs lots more than a comfy pair of shoes to restore order in her kingdom.
I've always been a big fan of fairytales. Stories about princesses being saved by Prince Charming, living happily ever after in a beautiful castle in a faraway land... I guess the link between happy-ending fairytales and romance/chick lit novels is quite obvious, so whenever the two are combined you can always count me in. When I was contacted by author Stacy Juba about reviewing her novel 'Fooling Around with Cinderella' (released on November 6th by Thunder Horse Press), I straight away loved the sound of the novel, which is the start of a new book series. The idea of Storybook Valley, a theme park completely dedicated to fairytales, is something I loved straight away and I couldn't wait to see what the novel would be like!
Jaine Andersen is unemployed and seriously looking for a job to take her mind off all the wedding planning and babysitting she has to do for her quite demanding twin sisters. When she manages to get an interview with Dylan Callahan, manager at the local family theme park Storybook Valley, about a marketing job, Jaine knows she will do anything to get the job. Dylan is impressed with Jaine's creativity and determination and decides to hire her. There's just one catch: there is no room for the marketing position at the moment, so until the end of the season he wants Jaine to play the role of Cinderella. While Jaine knows walking around a theme park in a princess dress wasn't her first idea of a suitable job, she knows it will eventually get her what she wants. But keeping secrets from your family, making children happy, coming up with marketing strategies, and developing a crush on one of your colleagues, all at the same time, is quite a challenge, even for Cinderella...
Oh, I just loved every bit of this novel, from start to finish; what a brilliant read! The combination of chick lit and fairy tale just works so well, if you ask me, and Stacy Juba created a thoroughly enjoyable and fun read which I can't recommend enough to any romantic comedy fan out there. I loved the fairy tale element brought into the story by Storybook Valley, the theme park in which the novel is set, but also the modern twist the author gave the story of Cinderella in the form of the protagonist, Jaine. The fairy tale elements are incorporated in the story in a clever way; the elements are clearly there, but the story reads like a modern-day chick lit novel.
I easily warmed to Jaine and thought she was a wonderful heroine. She's easy to relate to and I loved seeing her develop as a character throughout the story. There was also a great cast of secondary characters, such as Dylan and his family and all Jaine's new co-workers at the theme park. The story really had it all for me and I can't even begin to explain how excited I am that this is just the first part of an entire Storybook Valley book series! Overall, 'Fooling Around with Cinderella' is a fun, heart-warming, and simply magical read that entertained me from start to finish; I loved it!