Title: The Captive Maiden
Author: Melanie Dickerson
Age Group: Teen/Young Adult
Genre: Christian Romance
Series: Romance Fairy Tales, book four
Star Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
The bottom line: A romantic retelling of Cinderella with Christian elements and a strong heroine, I really enjoyed The Captive Maiden--in fact, it was my favorite of all the series! Highly enjoyable!
This book was given to me by the publisher, Zondervan, in exchange for an honest review.
Gisela's life has been good, until her father died. Forced to wait on her mean, ugly stepsisters and stepmother, she tries to find solace where she can. When she meets Valten, the duke's son, and learns that he is throwing a ball for all the eligible ladies in the kingdom, she is determined to go. The two fall passionately in love, but they realize that there are forces conspiring against them that even Gisela may not be able to fight against..
What I enjoyed:
-I liked the premise of this whole series: clean, romantic retellings of fairy tales with real meaning
-The pacing of this novel was breakneck, I couldn't put it down
-Gisela, the young woman forced by unpleasant circumstances to serve her evil family members--she is the one that really endeared this book to me, because she wasn't just a damsel in distress--she fought for her own freedom, and I really liked that
-Valten, the macho man that Gisela falls for, searching for something greater than a life fighting as a warrior--I really enjoyed and felt for him, and I was rooting for him--I liked his character development
-I liked the way the Christian elements were incorporated--skillfully, just enough so that they struck meaning with the reader, but didn't overwhelm the entire story
-The cameos of characters from the previous books
What could've been better:
-I hated Evfemia
Overall, I highly enjoyed The Captive Maiden--a wonderful story! Next on deck: Bleed Like Me by C. Desir!