I generally review romance, paranormal and urban fantasy. I tend to pick review books that I want to read, so generally my reviews will be positive. I always give my honest opinion: good, bad, and indifferent.
Note: on my blog I use a letter grading system. I've listed the ratings below. For sites with stars, I have listed the equivalent rating. If I didn't finish the book, I will not rate it with stars.
A+ Personal Favorite (5 stars)
A Loved It (4.5 or 5 stars)
A- Enjoyed A Lot (4 or 4.5 stars)
B+ Liked It A Lot (4 stars)
B Liked It -- Recommend (4 stars)
B- Liked It -- But I had a few small issues (3 or 3.5 stars)
C+ Liked It -- But I had issues (3 or 3.5 stars)
C Finished It -- Liked some, didn't like some (3 stars)
C- Finished It -- Liked a little, didn't like a lot (2 or 2.5 stars)
D Not A Big Fan (2 stars)
E Don’t Waste Your Time (1 star)
TW: Reading this book was like watching a Train Wreck
DNF: Did Not Finish
updated July 9, 2015
I listened to the audiobook of Fairest of the All with my 8.5 year old daughter, and we both enjoyed it.
The story is clever - an ordinary 5th grade girl and her younger brother move into a new home and find a mysterious mirror in the basement. When messing around with the mirror late one night, the pair find themselves magically pulled into a new land, one inhabited by a girl named Snow, who lives with seven dwarfs. Yep... they land right in the middle of Snow White's story, and for better or worse, they change the entire course of the fairytale.
My daughter and I were entertained by the story, and we found ourselves giggling more than once. We made a game of trying to figure out what would happen next - how protagonist Abby would "fix" the story to match the one she knows. Overall, the story flowed smoothly, and surprisingly, it was not predictable, which can be a problem with many of the early-reader/middle-grade, girl-centric books my daughter reads. I really liked how Snow achieves her "happily ever after" in the new version - more girl-power than being saved. There is also a positive message about accepting change, woven into the book.
The story is told in the first person point-of-view of Abby, who is a bit hyper. Her brain seems to run a mile a minute, and the narration by Emily Eiden fits perfectly. Maybe too perfectly! Listening for more than 20 minutes at a time can be a bit tiring because the pace and matching narration is very quick and highly energetic.
I would say Fairest of the All is suitable for girls 6-11 and young boys who enjoy fairytales. There is no objectionable material, and overall the book has a positive message. The narration is well matched, which can be a blessing, as well as a curse.
My Rating of the story: B (when co-listening with my daughter) Otherwise: C+