Escape Publishing, Harlequin Enterprises Australia
Once Upon a Crime…
Melanie wants to get incriminating information on her evil stepfather and she’ll get it —even if it means giving in to an odious toad’s demands. Cole is undercover, and when the opportunity arises for him to get closer to the criminal he’s investigating, using the man’s beautiful stepdaughter, he grabs it.Esmerelda is a Fairy Godmother Enforcer charged with getting the Frog Prince fairytale back on track. But fate has saddled her with a partner, and Rumpelstiltskin — with his sexy bad boy swagger — has a hidden agenda of his own.In the Fairy Isle, nothing is as it seems…
As someone who loves a good fairytale in any of its forms (original, classics, re-tellings, adaptations, films, TV series etc), I can’t help but love this cute little re-telling by Aussie author Shannon Curtis.
Like Curtis’ other work, Enamoured isn’t a straight fairytale retelling, rather its a cross over between the world of fairytales and real life romantic suspense. You see, our fairytale Heroine, Melanie, is trying her hardest to secure evidence against her corrupt father. It’s through this search and a few unfortunate stumbles that she meets Cole, an undercover cop assigned to the case. Although the pair don’t initially hit it off (it is a fantastic meet and greet though!), they soon become allies in the fight for justice. A fight they just might be able to win if Melanie’s fairy godmother Esmerelda wasn’t so hell pent on keeping her Frog Prince fairytale on track. What ensures is a funny, and loveable story that will leave you feeling fantastic, if not a bit fairytale homesick.
As a whole Enamoured is a faiytale in itself, just not in the classic and traditional way. For it shows what happens when a fairytale, such as the Frog Prince, becomes so off track that the Princess finds her own Prince, and works through the dangers on her own. It’s a novella where women aren’t simply damsels-in-distress but take an active role in their future (similar in some ways to the retelling of The Bloody Chamber by Angela Carter) and kick back when fate and destiny would rather they sit around and wait. It’s a story where Rumpelstiltskin doesn’t play by the rules, and Esmerelda the Fairy Godmother struggles to find a way to save her Frog Prince fairytale from being utterly ruined.
On that note however, I have to point out some of the slight flaws I had with the novel. The first being it was too short. I know its a novella and thus not a full length book, but by God I hope she writes a sequel to this story one day because I couldn’t get enough. And while this isn’t necessarily a bad thing normally, it is when you reach the end of the story and find yourself going ‘huh? Where’s the rest?’. You see the character’s in this novella are so adorable and true to life, that you can’t help but hope that Melanie and Cole finally get their happy ever after in the end. In the magical sense too, it seems like there’s a lot more to Esmerelda and Rumpelstiltskin then meets the eye, and boy do I want to see what these two get up to next.
Enamoured is the perfect little novella for any fairytale lover, or simply someone looking for a bit of fun in the form of a short, sweet and romantic read with a tad bit of suspense thrown in for good fun.
Highly recommend this to anyone who wants a short but sweet read, and fairytale lovers with an open mind.
Read as part of my Australian Women’s Writer’s Challenge 2013