First off, we have the main character Ellie. She has grown up as a maid in her own home. Her Mom is dead and her Dad is still there, but not happy. He is married to an evil chick. And evil step-mother has two not- very-nice girls. I know this sounds like every other retelling out there but it's not. I don't want to give anything else away, because the story is not very long and I want anyone who wants to read it to be successfully surprised, just like me.
The last thing to tell you of importance is that this is a Christian re-telling. At first I was all like "it probably won't be able to capture what it needs to, it is this girl's debut novel and sometimes those are not the best." DO NOT LISTEN TO Have-not-read-this-book-Me!!!!!!! It was so well done and fantastic!!!!!!!! I don't know what she was thinking. I am not her any longer. The main lesson is that God writes the best love story, if we let Him.
It is a really sweet romance. This was totally clean, no described kissing, or kissing for no reason. Just letting you know, this is a non-magic story, more real life re-telling (my favorite type!).
Just a fun fact, the author is a homeschool graduate! One more fun fact, I read this book all in one sitting! I read the Ebook version. Now I need A Dream Not Imagined in hard copy. I so, already, want to have a re-read!
As for content there is not very much to be said: the evil characters are evil, but you know that, it's Cinderella! A character (not any of our heroes/heroines) drinks alcoholic beverages to the point of being drunk in one small part (but it is not said in those words, it is NOT looked at as a good thing to do, and is not a big part of the book). Overall, I would recommend this book for age 12, if the alcohol scene will go over their head, or if you have already had a talk about it, even if just a tiny bit. If not, then until the age when they you/they have discussed alcohol. Also, for those who are concerned about mentions of such things as death... see below the spoiler note.
KIND OF TINY SPOILER!!!!!
In a part of the big plot twist there is a brief mention of dead bodies from a fire.