Rating: 4.5 / 5
IF THE SHOE FITS by Julie Murphy arrived in my adult Once Upon a Book Club book box. I had read and enjoyed a couple of Julie Murphy’s books in the past, so I was happy to receive this one as well!
IF THE SHOE FITS follows Cindy, a recent graduate with a degree in shoe design who is living back at home with her stepmother and two stepsisters. Her stepmother is the executive producer of the very popular dating show Before Midnight. When it turns out the show is short on contestants, Cindy makes the very ‘not her’ decision to volunteer. Her stepmother is worried that Cindy’s plus-size figure isn’t exactly something the public will appreciate, but she finally agrees to give Cindy a chance on the show.
Cindy doesn’t find the reality TV scene a perfect fit and not all of the other contestants are exactly nice to her. Shocking to everyone, even herself, Cindy begins to really like the bachelor at the center of it all. With hopes of making her own way into the fashion industry, Cindy uses her opportunities to make herself known to the people around her and those watching at home.
While I’ve never been a big reality TV watcher, I do love a good fairytale retelling and this reality show twist on Cinderella was really well done. I really liked the way the author reconfigured the story. We don’t have an evil stepmother, but instead she’s a concerned and overworked stepmother/producer who doesn’t always make the right calls. The stepsisters are competing against Cindy, but they’re also in her corner. The prince seems to be a genuinely good guy (do those actually exist on reality dating shows?).
I was surprised how quickly I got hooked into Cindy’s story and I was rooting for her throughout. Cindy is a fun character to follow, able to stand up for herself and ask for what she needs. There are of course going to be some bumps in the road, but Cindy handled herself well!
This likely isn’t a book I would have reached for if it hadn’t arrived in a subscription box, but I am so glad that I read it! I really enjoy that this subscription has me trying out books and authors I might not have otherwise read. If you are interested in checking out Once Upon a Book Club for yourself, DGREADS10 will give you 10% off your first order!