cover image If I Have a Wicked Stepmother, Where's My Prince?

If I Have a Wicked Stepmother, Where's My Prince?

Melissa Kantor, Author . Hyperion $15.99 (283p) ISBN 978-0-786

Kantor's (Confessions of a Not It Girl ) modern Cinderella story has clever touches and adds a twist. After her father's marriage, Lucy is forced to live with her stepmother and two stepsisters on Long Island while he wraps up work back in California. When she inadvertently attracts the attention of Connor, the cutest senior jock at school, she goes from friendless to popular. But Lucy begins to realize she and Connor have nothing in common beyond their love of basketball; she doesn't connect with him the way she does with artist Sam. Meanwhile, her stepmother treats Lucy like a maid and even gets her in trouble with her dad. The author has some fun updating Cinderella: Lucy has to work taking coats and carrying dishes at her stepmother's dinner party, and instead of the ball, this novel culminates at the prom. (The frame allows for some funny lines, too, including the quote that also serves as the book's title.) Readers will likely think Connor's interest in her seems superficial, so it may come as little surprise when Lucy tries to picture herself "slow dancing with my perfect prince," and sees Sam instead. Her family problems resolve a bit easily, but there are some magical moments here, and Lucy comes across as a strong heroine. Ages 12-up. (Sept.)