6 Enchanting Retellings of “Cinderella”

Do you love retold fairy tales? Can’t get enough of Cinderella? There are more extensive lives of Cinderella retellings out there, but these are six of the best that we actually recommend!

Stepsister by Jennifer Donnelly

Isabelle has never been able to please her mother. She’s too wild. Too ugly. Too opinionated. That hasn’t kept her from trying, though. She’ll cut off her own toes to try to make her mother happy. But the prince isn’t fooled. As blood pools in Cindererlla’s glass slipper, Isabelle is sent away in disgrace. Then chance gives her the opportunity to change her fate, to reclaim the pieces of her heart she’s lost. Isabelle yearns to try. But maybe she’s too bitter and broken to get her own happily-ever-after.  A standout feminist fairy tale retelling featuring a bold heroine and an imaginative world.

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Princess of Glass by Jessica Day George

A companion book to Princess of the Midnight Ball, this reads as a mixture of fantasy, romance, and mystery.  The protagonist Princess Poppy is not the Cinderella figure, but, rather, the one who takes it upon herself to discover where a serving girl has suddenly been acquiring fancy new clothes.  This gives the story a unique spin other retellings lack.

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Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine

At birth Ella was cursed by the fairy Lucinda with the gift of obedience. She has to follow any order given by anybody, even if she receives a command that endangers her or others. Determined to gain her freedom, Ella sets out on a journey to find Lucinda and beg her to take back her gift. Rescue, however, may come from a more unexpected quarter. With its spirited heroine, intriguing premise, and heart-wrenching emotion, Ella Enchanted proves a timeless tale that bears repeated readings.  It has rightfully taken a place among the classics of children’s literature.

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Disenchanted: The Trials of Cinderella by Megan Morrison

This retelling takes inspiration from the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire to depict Ella as a proponent of labor reform. Coming from “new money,” Ella struggles to find acceptance in her new social class, but also feels drawn to help the working class from which she rose. A modern take on a classic tale.

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Geekerella by Ashley Poston

In this modern retelling, Elle is a geek girl who meets her prince at a con. A cute read meant primarily to be fun, though the book also raises questions about geek culture and what it means to be a “real” fan.  A lively retelling.

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Wayfarer by Lili St. Crow

Ellie Sindar is a powerful charmer, but her stepmother abuses her, forcing her to use her spells for stepmother’s gain.  But when handsome Avery arrives at her school, Ellie begins to dream of a future romance.  Unfortunately, however, her stepmother has dark plans in mind–and Ellie’s soul may be the price.

12 thoughts on “6 Enchanting Retellings of “Cinderella”

  1. alilovesbooks says:

    Great list. I still need to pick up a couple but absolutely loved Stepsister. I would also add to that Cinder and Ella by Kelly Oram. Geekerella is similar to it but in my opinion Cinder & Ella is better (or possibly it’s just it was first so Geekerella always feels like an imitation)


  2. Kelly | Another Book in the Wall says:

    Lovely list! The only one on here that I’ve read is Geekerella, though I am somewhat familiar with Ella Enchanted, since I read some of it in elementary school. I’ve heard some nice things about Stepsister, so it’s great to see that you, loves recommend it as well! ❤


  3. Grab the Lapels says:

    Cinderella is my favorite Disney movie. I enjoyed the live-action adaptation that came out several years ago. I wondered why that live-action film came out and then there was a huge gap before the Disney picked up steam. Yes, The Jungle Book was in there, but people really took notice around Beauty and the Beast, and the movies haven’t stopped since (Aladdin and The Lion King were in my theatre at the same time!).


    • Krysta says:

      Initially I thought it was weird Disney apparently intended to redo their entire catalog, but the remakes have been great so far! I like Cinderella, Beauty and the Beast, and Maleficent a lot!

      Liked by 1 person

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