“Imagine what might happen if our most beloved fairy tale princesses were the best of friends and had the dreams, dilemmas, and libidos of the modern woman. How would their stories unfold after the wedding bells stopped ringing? Set in a fictional realm based on New York City, DESPERATELY EVER AFTER sprinkles women’s fiction with elements of fantasy, and encourages readers to rethink everything they know about happy endings. One part Sex and the City, two parts Desperate Housewives, and three parts Brothers Grimm, DESPERATELY EVER AFTER picks up where the original tales left off—and reimagines them a la Gregory Maguire’s Wicked. With the wit of authors like Jennifer Weiner and the vision of ABC’s Once Upon a Time, the women of DESPERATELY EVER AFTER rescue each other from life’s trials with laughter, wine, and a scandalous new take on happily ever after.” (Summary taken from Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20696767-desperately-ever-after)

I started following Laura Kenyon’s blog a month or so ago and love it. She’s so fun! I love that she’s a redhead like me and she has a dog! 😉 She offered to send me an e-copy of her book in exchange for an honest review. http://laurakenyon.com/

I absolutely loved this book. Anything fairy tale-ish/princess-y is right up my alley. Laura focuses on a few of the major princesses: Belle, Rapunzel, Cinderella, Penelopea, and (Dawn) Sleeping Beauty.  I love how she takes the different princesses and allows them to live simultaneously in their own realm in peace. Growing up, I watched The Little Mermaid on a daily basis. I also enjoyed Cinderella and was in LOVE with that big blue ball gown. And Beauty and the Beast… can we just talk about that library?! It wasn’t until Tangled came out that I watched a movie about Rapunzel, and I can’t remember watching The Princess and the Pea.  When I started reading I was afraid I would be depressed the whole time…I mean, these happily ever after tales I grew up on are crumbling at avalanche speed! Belle realizes her husband has been unfaithful the moment she finds out she’s pregnant… I mean really? *SOB* But, this book is hilarious, sweet, and ingenious. I was NOT depressed the whole time! From timid, does-what-husband-requires- Belle, to paranoid, full of regret Cindy, to plays by no rules but her own Rapunzel, to insomniac, hating her husband Dawn, Laura weaves a magical tale that shows the fairy tales can change, but can still be happy…just more real life! I mean, what woman hasn’t felt depressed because she can no longer fit in the dress of her dreams from her teenage years? Or wishes she would have accomplished more goals and bucket list to-do’s before she had to settle down with a career in the “real world?”  I’m only 25 and I know that feeling!

My favorite character in the book is probably Belle. Yes, at times  I was so frustrated with her because she couldn’t see what a scumbag Donner was, but as she is comforted by her friends and the idea that she’s going to be a mom, she begins to live her life the way she wants and enjoys. During the beginning I didn’t really like Rapunzel’s character, because she seemed like a hard-hearted man-eater. Yet as the story develops and we uncover more of her past, she is only that way because she’s been hurt. The romance scenes between Rapunzel and Ethan….*swoon*.

Not to give too much away, but my favorite scene was when Cinderella and Aaron are dancing at her birthday party, and she’s in the ball gown that started it all. After kids and other responsibilities, Cindy feels stuck in a rut…but this scene proves that the fairy tale love doesn’t have to end, it just becomes more real!

One of the things I found very cool was the “Hall of Curiosities.” This museum housed all the things that made the princesses famous. I also like how the friends had nicknames for each other…Cindy, Pun… very cute. I feel the overall message from Desperately Ever After is that life isn’t perfect like the movie shows, but we create our own happiness and the endings may have to change for that to happen. Overall, I think this book is fantastic, and I can’t wait for the sequel! What are you waiting for? Buy it already! 🙂 http://www.amazon.com/Desperately-Ever-After-Laura-Kenyon-ebook/dp/B00I5RM4OK/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1393336837&sr=1-1&keywords=desperately+ever+after