Book Review: Cinderella, An Art Deco Love Story

Cinderella, An Art Deco Love Story, retold by Lynn Roberts and illustrated by David Roberts
Published by Pavilion Children's Books, RRP £5.99 paperback

This is a very entertaining and beautifully illustrated re-telling of the classic Cinderella fairy story. When Greta's father remarries, his horrible new wife and her two wicked step-daughters, Elvira and Ermintrude, move into Greta's house and make her life a misery. They steal her flapper dresses and make her sleep in the kitchen amongst the cinders, nicknaming her Cinderella. A Royal Ball ia announced on the radio, but Cinderella is kept so busy she has no time to get ready. Fortunately, her fashion-conscious fairy-godmother arrives and ensures Cinderella has a gorgeous dress and beautiful new car so she can can go to the ball in style!

This book has been a real hit with everyone in our house. It's the sort of book that adults enjoy looking through just as much as children! My two daughters love the story and find it very funny. They enjoy the fact that it's a story they recognise, but with unusual characters and a modern twist, for example the elegant car and chauffeur instead of a horse-drawn carriage.

However, it's the fantastic Art Deco style illustrations that really make this special. Each page is illustrated with David Roberts' pen, ink and watercolour pictures, inpsired by the movie stars and magazine covers of the 20's and 30's. There's so much to look at, from the beautiful flapper dresses to the Art Deco furniture. The illustrations really bring the characters to life too, especially the nasty stepmother and her wicked daughters with their long pointy noses and chins! My husband also liked their large black-rimmed eyes! Best of all though, they are mean and ugly in a funny way, so my children recognised them as being horrible without being scared of them.

This really is a wonderful picture book, and one which I would recommend for all ages. It would also be good for teachers who are studying fairy tales with their classes. There are also two other books from the same author and illustrator - Rapunzel and Little Red. We enjoyed Cinderella so much that I think I will have to get these too!