It Started With Goodbye
Author: Christina June
Pages: Paperback, 304 pages
Release Date: May 9th 2017
Sixteen-year-old Tatum Elsea is bracing for the worst summer of her life. After being falsely accused of a crime, she’s stuck under stepmother-imposed house arrest and her BFF’s gone ghost. Tatum fills her newfound free time with community service by day and working at her covert graphic design business at night (which includes trading emails with a cute cello-playing client). When Tatum discovers she’s not the only one in the house keeping secrets, she finds she has the chance to make amends with her family and friends. Equipped with a new perspective, and assisted by her feisty step-abuela-slash-fairy-godmother, Tatum is ready to start fresh and maybe even get her happy ending along the way.
To be honest I always feel a bit weary when it comes to fairy tale retellings. I found that I often feel the missed the point. Gotta say that I am brought up with the classics, not the Disney version. Though I did watch them as well after I was a bit bigger. So somehow the classic tales hold a place for me that very few re-telling can touch.
It started with Goodbye is one of the few, and that simply because June didn't actually try and retell the story but used it as an inspiration. There are quite a few points that adhere to the original, but mostly this is it's own story. A rather wonderful one, I might add.
The plot was at times rather predictable, but it was very enjoyable. It's probably the aspect that holds the closest similarity to cinderella.
The writing style is witty, straight forward and insightful.
The character building is what made this book shine. It's also the aspect, that is the furthest from the original. June did a great job at taking stereotypical figures and turning them into interesting characters. I love how Tatum changes, but more how she goes from seeing only black and white, and more importantly only her side of the story to all the shades in between. She starts thinking in terms of others and how they perceive things.
Naturally there is a HEA and the end is a bit happy clappy and all the characters are just awesome... a bit too much if you ask me but I wasn't totally displeased. In fact it's very cute and a totally satisfying ending. The journey was thoroughly enjoyable, I could relate, having been 16, and frankly I think alot of us can.
One of the best retelling of a fairy tale I've read so far.