Tuesday, July 7, 2015

TransCinderella by Arnica Butler

TransCinderella is subtitled A Gender Transformation Fairy Tale, and that so very appropriate. Arnica Butler has really outdone herself this time around, finding a new way to retell the Cinderella story that actually adds something to the fairy tale. Other authors, of course, have taken a gender-bender take on the story, but it's the strength of the characters that make this stand out.

As you'd expect, all the usual characters are here. Sander Elling is our Cinderella, a closeted Transsexual who doesn't see himself as gay, but who does have a feminine attraction to other men. Caroline, his father's new bimbo trophy wife, is our Evil Stepmother, a woman who is looking to eliminate anybody who stands between her and two family fortunes. Her brother, Kenneth, is our Prince Charles, a bisexual artist who strikes up a friendship with Sander that is just chock-full of erotic undertones. Finally, we have Farrah, the transsexual hairdresser who serves as our Fairy Godmother, an old friend of Sander's mother who has long provided a safe haven for his feminine expression.

How they all play into the fairy tale, and how the story progresses is much of the charm here, so I won't say much to take away from the joy of discovery. Instead, I will say that this is a wonderfully romantic tale, with a pair of lovers you desperately want to fall into each other's arms, and a villainess you wish you could turn into a pumpkin. There's a bit of magic involved, as you'd expect from such a tale, but it doesn't overwhelm the characters or their story. Finally, of course, I will say that TransCinderella gives us the happily-ever-after we so desire, but precisely how is for you to discover.

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