There was a new Cinderella story in yesterday's Guardian by Man Booker prize winner Hilary Mantel, with lovely illustrations by Posy Simmonds.
'Cinderella in Autumn' is an intriguing look at life for Cinderella 20 years after the wedding. The story is shot through with references to our times - Cinderella is stalked by paparazzi, her remaining stepsister is hoping the Tories get in, and the prince runs a scheme for young people involving white water rafting that 'brings out your potential and fits you for a destiny'. And we discover that the Prince has always had more of a relationship with her shoes than with Cinderella herself: 'She would see him, in absent moments, caressing the glass heel, which would seem to grow higher under his fingertips.'
I'm not going to say too much more because it's a good read, and I don't want to spoil it, but I do like the way Mantel has used the story to comment on our fame obsessed culture and the depressing fact that, for some girls, marrying a prince (or sleeping with a golfer) might still be thought of as the best route to happiness.
2 days ago