Book Reviews of The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1)

The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1)
The Fairy Godmother - Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1
Author: Mercedes Lackey
ISBN-13: 9780373802456
ISBN-10: 0373802455
Publication Date: 11/1/2004
Pages: 496
Rating:
  • Currently 4.1/5 Stars.
 287

4.1 stars, based on 287 ratings
Publisher: Luna
Book Type: Paperback
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

42 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 386 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 7
I don't know who wrote the description for the back of this book, but I don't think they actually read the story.

I did read it, and I thought it was a very clever premise and a delight for those of us who love fairy tales. Two notes of caution: you will get more enjoyment out of this book if are you already familiar with all of the standard fairy tales, and some of the non-standard ones. They are referenced frequently. For instance, one of the characters is trying to become a Ladderlocks. This means her life is being shaped into that of Rapunzel, which the book doesn't come right out and say. The other note of caution concerns a bit of descriptive sex. Children love to read fairy tales, but this one is best left for the grown-ups.
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 7 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 6
A really good read - thankfully a lot less, erm, flowery than Lackey's other offerings, "The Fairy Godmother" is a fantastic take on the Cinderella tale, with a plot good enough to steal that'll keep you stuck to the page for hours on end. I love the universe and would love to read more if she continues to write more sequels. As for bad points, there are some jarring little observations the characters make about themselves, and the plot, though interesting to follow, is fairly predictable. Apart from that, this book gave me several hours of enjoyment, and I recommend it wholeheartedly.
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 17 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 4
Freaking hilarious and quite lovely actually. For anyone who hates the way the traditional "Cinderella" is portrayed you must read this one! Loved it! I especially love the way she turns the table on the loverboy spoiled gent she comes into contact with...hahahah just read it you'll thank me later.
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 270 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
I absoutely looooved this book! My first from Mercedes Lackey that I actually finished reading, and now I will definately read more of her!!
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 458 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
I enjoyed this book!
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 24 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
This is way different then any of her other books. Her Valdemar books are my fave the Alta trilogy after that. This one is worth reading if you are into fairy tales. Kinda like The Black Swan. Total departure from the Harald books and she really showed her skill of totally changing her writing style.
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 265 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
I was a bit hesitant to start this story as Im a romance reader at heart and a fantasy reader second. This was my first Lackey book and though it wasnt great, I still have several that Im anxious to read. There was a lot I liked about the storyline, particularly the snarky dry humor. Who wouldnt give their right tit to be able to turn that ass of a boyfriend into a braying mule? I loved the interaction of the characters in Elenas home, they were always good for a laugh and a bit of backstory. I loved the premise of the story as who doesnt like to see Cinderella get her prince but the story itself was pretty slow and Lackey didnt allow us to see what was happening as much as telling us. I loved the where Fairy Godmothers come from storyline as I dont think Ive run into that before. Very nicely done!

But there was a character that I hardily got tired of- The Tradition. Yes, it was important that we realize how important The Tradition was but I got tired of being hit over the head with The Tradition stick. This is an area where allowing us to see what was possible would have made so much more difference than telling us. Despite this I did finish the book and while not a great story, it wasnt awful either, more middle of the road.
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 962 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
I have heard of Mercedes Lackey, of coursewhat fantasy reader hasnt?but, until this book, had not read anything by her. I picked up THE FAIRY GODMOTHER on a whim in the bookstore, when I was still on a post-Crown Duel high and desiring a similarly pleasurable fantasy read. THE FAIRY GODMOTHER definitely fulfilled that desire of mine. Its a wonderfully unique concept, crafted by the hands of a master.

The most amazing part about this book is the thoroughness with which Mercedes Lackey explores an original fantasy concept. There are some pretty standard tropes in fairy tales: long-suffering good girl gets the prince, magic helps the overlooked but goodhearted and deserving third son, and so on. Lackey takes those common expectations and transforms it into the Tradition, a powerful and often dangerously insistent magical force that tries to carry out its tropes without any regard to peoples different wishes, and that must be appeased through subtle manipulations. Its enchantingly clever, a new take on the fractured fairy tale, and would give someone like me oodles of delight as we consider how Lackey lays out the plot and rules in this world.

The characters, in contrast, do not shine as strongly. Elena is a fine, strong female protagonist, but she doesnt particularly stand out beyond being a typical fine, strong female protagonist. The main plot here is the magical one, and so the romantic subplot is exactly thata subplot, feeling a little forced and out of place at times.

Overall, though, I thoroughly enjoyed THE FAIRY GODMOTHER on account of its wonderfully executed original concept. Upon finishing this book, I eagerly went out and found the other books in this series, and will look forward to delving into them when I get the chance!
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 281 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
I was very intrigued by Ms. Lackeys' contemporary attitudes in a fairy tale gone weird. Elna is a real woman with true emotions, thoughts and cares - and Alexander - an ass! Prince Charming gone very, very wrong! I loved this book!
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 167 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
She was supposed to be Cinderella, but it didn't work out and now she is trying to be a fairy godmother. A fun book and a good read.
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 24 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
I love fairy tale-based novels as much as the next person, but I thought I'd enjoy this one more than I did. For all its length it's written in a rather superficial, breezy style. But it was enjoyable and I was thinking that my 12-year-old would really like it when - surprise! explicit sex scenes. The sex just seemed like an odd mismatch with this book. Not a keeper for me in any case.
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 262 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
This book was a lot of fun -- I thoroughly enjoyed it! This is book one is ther series.
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 14 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
First in the 500 Kingdom series, very enjoyable read, wonderful spin on an old tale.
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 15 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Great read - will leave you smiling during the book and at the end of the book.
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 308 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
highly entertainting twist on the old cinderella story.
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 32 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
"Cinderalla", fairies, Princes and a host of others. Not my favorite of Lackey's work but was a nice read.
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 29 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
It got good reviews but it dragged in some chapters.
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 35 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
hard book to part with I loved it
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 962 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
I have heard of Mercedes Lackey, of coursewhat fantasy reader hasnt?but, until this book, had not read anything by her. I picked up THE FAIRY GODMOTHER on a whim in the bookstore, when I was still on a post-Crown Duel high and desiring a similarly pleasurable fantasy read. THE FAIRY GODMOTHER definitely fulfilled that desire of mine. Its a wonderfully unique concept, crafted by the hands of a master.

The most amazing part about this book is the thoroughness with which Mercedes Lackey explores an original fantasy concept. There are some pretty standard tropes in fairy tales: long-suffering good girl gets the prince, magic helps the overlooked but goodhearted and deserving third son, and so on. Lackey takes those common expectations and transforms it into the Tradition, a powerful and often dangerously insistent magical force that tries to carry out its tropes without any regard to peoples different wishes, and that must be appeased through subtle manipulations. Its enchantingly clever, a new take on the fractured fairy tale, and would give someone like me oodles of delight as we consider how Lackey lays out the plot and rules in this world.

The characters, in contrast, do not shine as strongly. Elena is a fine, strong female protagonist, but she doesnt particularly stand out beyond being a typical fine, strong female protagonist. The main plot here is the magical one, and so the romantic subplot is exactly thata subplot, feeling a little forced and out of place at times.

Overall, though, I thoroughly enjoyed THE FAIRY GODMOTHER on account of its wonderfully executed original concept. Upon finishing this book, I eagerly went out and found the other books in this series, and will look forward to delving into them when I get the chance!
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 33 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Ever since I read Enchantment by Orson Scott Card, I've been on the lookout for other fairy tales told with a twist to them. And Mercedes Lackey definitely exceeded my expectations in this book.

First of all, I've had the pleasure of enjoying some of Lackey's other books, and it is a pleasant surprise to see the vastly different writing styles between her epic fantasy series and... well, this. Although, it is a change that is well-suited to this genre.

Going into it from just the synopsis, I was expecting more of a "challenge a day" type story, which is not the case here. Perhaps I should have expected it, but the story is more of a romantic story than an empowered woman story. (Get it? Romantic? *Slaps a knee*)

Although an entertaining story, character development was a bit undermined. There are static characters throughout the novel. Those who have changed can usually attribute their miraculous improvement to magic.

Still, an interesting and thought provoking novel that poses the questions, what if there are such things as destiny and fate? Is any decision that we make of our free will, or is there a higher power prodding us along?
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 962 more book reviews
I have heard of Mercedes Lackey, of coursewhat fantasy reader hasnt?but, until this book, had not read anything by her. I picked up THE FAIRY GODMOTHER on a whim in the bookstore, when I was still on a post-Crown Duel high and desiring a similarly pleasurable fantasy read. THE FAIRY GODMOTHER definitely fulfilled that desire of mine. Its a wonderfully unique concept, crafted by the hands of a master.

The most amazing part about this book is the thoroughness with which Mercedes Lackey explores an original fantasy concept. There are some pretty standard tropes in fairy tales: long-suffering good girl gets the prince, magic helps the overlooked but goodhearted and deserving third son, and so on. Lackey takes those common expectations and transforms it into the Tradition, a powerful and often dangerously insistent magical force that tries to carry out its tropes without any regard to peoples different wishes, and that must be appeased through subtle manipulations. Its enchantingly clever, a new take on the fractured fairy tale, and would give someone like me oodles of delight as we consider how Lackey lays out the plot and rules in this world.

The characters, in contrast, do not shine as strongly. Elena is a fine, strong female protagonist, but she doesnt particularly stand out beyond being a typical fine, strong female protagonist. The main plot here is the magical one, and so the romantic subplot is exactly thata subplot, feeling a little forced and out of place at times.

Overall, though, I thoroughly enjoyed THE FAIRY GODMOTHER on account of its wonderfully executed original concept. Upon finishing this book, I eagerly went out and found the other books in this series, and will look forward to delving into them when I get the chance!
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 17 more book reviews
Enjoyable fantasy/romance. A genre I was very unfamiliar with. I look forward to reading more by this author; she's quite prolific.
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 312 more book reviews
You never know what you are getting into when you start a thick book such as this one. Will it move fast? Will its chapters be long? For the most part the journey in the book was well paced. The chapters were long and I sometimes felt like I needed an extra break to stop but I love the twist in this tale of Cinderella.

Elena Klovis also know as Ella Cinders in her home town starts out as your almost typical Cinderella story but her prince does not show. Still left with her wicked stepmother and sisters she runs away looking for any life better then what she has. When it seems that no one in her kingdom will take her in her Fairy Godmother comes for her with a proposition... become her apprentice.

I loved the way the world was brought together. Instead of God or Destiny, they have what they call the Tradition and it moves everyone in a way that you feel you have to act but Elena and her Godmother believe in changing the Tradition and they do just that. They change the fairy tale to outcome that is better suited which is in goodness not evil.

There is an interview in my copy in the back that Mercedes Lackey did. She answers the question Why do you think women like fantasy? she says (and I am paraphrasing) that woman are more likely to not settle for things to go wrong not the way they hoped. They look for more, they hope for more. I believe this is why re-told fairy tales are becoming so popular now and why I enjoy a good happy fairy tale.

Now I dont know if all of the books from this series are happy ones but I have a feeling I will enjoy them much the same as I did this one.
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 30 more book reviews
Mercedes Lackey has a wonderful way with fantasy, and when she tackles a fairytale theme, as in this book, you can expect it to be something magical in a way that goes above and beyond the original.
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 33 more book reviews
I really liked this book. A very interesting look at Fairy Godmothers.
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 3 more book reviews
I loved this new twist on the life of a "Fairy Godmother". If you love romance and want to have a grownup view of the one that grants wishes this is a great book to have.
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on
This book was very intertaining. I picked it up wanting to try something new and am so glad I did. It is one of my new favorites.
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This is a story of a girl who starts as a character in a fairy tale, then becomes the apprentice of the fairy godmother. It was a intriguing read, given a different perspective on fairy tales. There is also a bit of romance thrown in for those who like that nonsense.
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 311 more book reviews
I am more of a horror lover, but this book Ill always remember fondly. It is just wonderful, every book lover should read this one. Top notch, fantastic, 5 stars. Its been 5 years since I read it and still I have warm feelings of fantasyland remembering it. Dont miss this one.
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 126 more book reviews
interesting to see how many of the old fairy tales were used. Very well written.
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This is the first Mercedes Lackey book I've read, and now I definitely want to look into more of her work. I really enjoyed this, and found the whole concept of the Tradition interesting. I've read lots of fairy tale retellings, and this book is totally unique by comparison. Highly recommended.
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on
This book was a suprise. It starts out kind of standard with the variation of a fairy tale going on, and then it blossoms into something more unique. I was pleasantly suprised and really enjoyed this book.
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 63 more book reviews
A fun spin on the fairy tales from childhood!!
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 1523 more book reviews
-------A really neat twist on the 'fairy godmother' tale--------
Elena was SUPPOSED to be her kingdom's Cindarella, but things just didn't work out. So instead of hiding in a sooty corner dodging her really rotten stepmother and stepsisters, she has to keep warding off frustrated would-be princely suitors while she trains and works at her REAL job . . .
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 14 more book reviews
Great story!
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 10 more book reviews
I liked it. It drags in parts, and the meat of the story doesn't start until about halfway through. But the fairy tale-twist genre (which is gaining in popularity) is well done here, and I look forward to reading more from this Five Hundred Kingdoms series.
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 18 more book reviews
FROM THE PUBLISHER
"In the land of Five Hundred Kingdoms, if you can't carry out your legendary role, life is no fairy tale . . .

Elena Klovis was supposed to be her kingdom's Cinderella -- until an accident of fate left her with a completely inappropriate prince! Determined not to remain with her stepfamily, Elena set out to get a new job -- and ended up becoming the Fairy Godmother for the land.

But "Breaking with Tradition" was no easy matter. True, she didn't have to sleep in the chimney, but she had to deal with arrogant, stuffed-shirt princes who kept trying to rise above their place in the tale. In fact, one of them was so ornery that Elena could do nothing but change him into a donkey.

Still, her practical nature couldn't let him roam the country, so she brought the donkey -- er, the prince! -- home to her cottage to teach him some lessons. All the while keeping in mind that breaking with tradition can land everyone into a kettle of fish -- sometimes literally!

And so begins a whole new tale . . ."
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 31 more book reviews
This book felt like it should be the first in a series because it was both too long and too short. It was too long because it spent a lot of time introducing and building the main character, her world, and its mechanics. It was too short because when you finally get to the big action, it was brief and unsatisfying compared to the rest of the novel. I would have rated this book higher if the pacing had been better.

The book had romance, but given that it's a story about fairy godmothers and set around fairy tales, that was expected. There was an attempt at sexy time which I could've done without though, and wish its pages had been given to the action sequence at the end.

The author loves the and abuses commas. It might have gotten used to it as I read on, but it seemed especially bad at the start of the book.

I must say that for all those complaints, the book was enjoyable. It was a light, quick, entertaining read. It had a lot of world-building/set-up, but I like that in the right circumstances. I like that the story was about the fairy godmother too; you don't often see stories from their perspective.
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on
Lost interest
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In the land of the 500 Kingdoms, if you can't carry out your legendary role, life is no fairy tale... Elena Klovis was supposed to be her kingdom's Cinderella---until fate left her with a completely inappropriate prince! Now, instead of sleeping in the chimney, she has to deal with arrogant, stuffed-shirt princes who keep trying to rise above their place in the tale. Sometimes a fairy godmother's work is never done....
reviewed The Fairy Godmother (Five Hundred Kingdoms, Bk 1) on + 13 more book reviews
In the land of Five Hundred Kingdoms, if you can't carry out your legendary role, life is no fairy tale...
Elena Klovis was suppose to be her Kingdom's Cinderella-until fate left her with a completely inappropriate prince! So she set out to make a new life for herself. But breaking with "The Tradition" was no easy matter-until she got a little help from her own fairy godmother. Who promptly offered Elena a most unexpected job... Now instead of sleeping in the chimney, she has to deal with arrogant, stuffed-shirt princes who keep trying to rise above their place in the tale. And there's one in particular who need to be dealt with...
Sometimes a fairy godmother's work is never done...
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I did not really enjoy this book. Will not read anything by this author.