The Stepsister Scheme (Princess Novels Series #1)

The Stepsister Scheme (PRINCESS NOVELS) - Jim C. Hines All right, i love a retold fairy tale more than some, but this one i still have mixed feelings about.I read a good review about it, and heard some good things, and really liked the cover... but found myself contemplating putting it down on more than one occasion. Especially in the beginning.I admit the story flowed better after the first quarter, but, oh, that first quarter almost did me in.In this story, Cinderella's name is Danielle, her prince has been kidnapped, and the prince's mother, Queen Beatrice has a team of princess (Snow White and Sleeping Beauty, anyone?) ready in the wings to rescue him from Danielle's stepsisters.The concept is pretty cool, both Snow White, who's name is really something i can't spell correctly (but that's ok, she goes by Snow in the book) and Sleeping Beauty, who's name is Talia, have darker tales than the ones we're usually told.Snow White is a sorceress who fell in love with the hunter that was told to cut her heart out, then fled when her evil mother tortured and killed him to get to her.Talia, is a martial arts master who has bitter grudges against the faeries for the 'gifts' they gave her, including the century of sleep where her evil uncle took the throne, causing her to flee when she awoke.I enjoyed the concept, and after a very rough start the story flowed really well. However, throughout the entire book i had a huge problem with the dialogue. I kept changing the wordplay in my head to make it more witty. I mean, it had potential, but always seemed to fall very flat... The author also didn't seem to quite grasp ahold of writing in a female point of view. I mean, i understand that they were supposed to be kick-ass princesses, but there was something 'not there' about all three of the girls.I enjoyed the story, especially when they went to Fairytown (HATE the name... even if it IS supposed to be purposefully bad...) and when the book picked up. I really got into it by the end, and am planning on reading the next one. I just wasn't a huge fan of how awkwardly the entire book started.So, i'll give it a 7.5/10. It was good, could have been better. But, i liked it.