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Mirrored (Kendra Chronicles) by Alex Flinn

Mirrored (Kendra Chronicles) (edition 2015)

by Alex Flinn (Author)

Series: Kendra Chronicles (4)

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1406156,496 (3.26)1
A modern, multi-generational tale of Kendra, the witch from "Snow White," who trains Violet, an ugly, lonely, and heartbroken girl in the 1980s who transforms herself into "the fairest one of all" but still cannot win Greg's heart, and Celine, Greg's daughter with Violet's high school rival, Jennifer.… (more)
Title:Mirrored (Kendra Chronicles)
Authors:Alex Flinn (Author)
Info:HarperTeen (2015), 384 pages
Collections:Your library

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Mirrored by Alex Flinn


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Showing 1-5 of 6 (next | show all)
I love a good fairy tale retelling and Alex Flinn definitely knows how to craft a story that is true to the spirit of the original while also working in a more modern world. Violet starts off as the ugly but smart girl in school, one whose frequently derided by others and even beaten up when she stands up for herself. Then, she discovers she's a witch with magical powers, and she quickly does what anyone ever called ugly would do - she makes herself beautiful. But beauty can't make her classmate like her or a certain boy love her and so Violet becomes obsessed with not only beauty but revenge. She plays a long game, but as a adult, she eventually does away with her high school rival and marries the boy she always love, but now Violet has a stepdaughter who just might be more beautiful than her. This might very well be one of my favorite Snow White retellings, especially because I loved the character of Goose and how he slowly emerged as a hero. This is a great book for fans of fairy tale retellings and simply a decent read in general. ( )
  wagner.sarah35 | Sep 2, 2021 |
Review originally posted at The Children's Book and Media Review

In this modern twist of Snow White, readers get the perspectives of all the primary characters. Violet is brilliant but ugly enough that her classmates and teachers despise and bully her. She only has one friend, Greg, until he forgets her and starts dating Violet’s worst enemy. While Violet is dealing with losing her only friend she meets Kendra, a witch who can help her change the way she looks and teach Violet how to use her magical gifts. Violet becomes obsessed with using magic to become beautiful, but nothing she does seems to be able to change Greg’s mind. Years later, Greg’s daughter, Celine, loves her new stepmother, Violet, until suddenly Violet no longer seems to like her at all. When Violet attacks Celine, Celine has to rely on the help of Kendra and her friend Goose to find her a true love’s kiss to save her life.

This book is obsessed with beauty, trying to get the message across that beauty is not everything. It also deals with themes of bullying and stereotyping. Goose is arguably the best character in the book, packing a lot of personality and charm into his short frame. A lot of the other characters, such as Greg, are one-dimensional and are only there to serve a purpose. Celine herself seems to only have the fault of being too pretty. The teacher’s dislike of Violet because of her ugliness in spite of being intelligent and a good student makes little sense. Some of the fairy tale adaptions into the modern world are very clever, but sometimes with so much contemporary the magic seems out of place. While not the best fairy tale retelling out there, the modern take and the book not taking itself too seriously makes it an interesting retelling of a classic story.

( )
  vivirielle | Aug 4, 2021 |
I liked this book, even through the heart-wrenching first part. I love Alex Flinn's retellings because they're clever and emotional, but I also dislike them for leaving me in a mess.

It's a retelling of the Snow White fairytale, featuring "evil queen" Violet and "Snow White" Celine. It's in a modern setting, though, so there aren't any queens or dwarves. Instead, there's the always-bullied Violet, who is bitterly mislead into thinking beauty is power. And there's her stepdaughter Celine, who is beautiful but humble. For the "seven dwarves", there's Goose, a short guy at Celine's high school. And finally, there's the character that connects all of these retellings: Kendra the witch. The story is pretty faithful to Snow White as we know it, except set in modern day and with a few changes.

Mirrored didn't affect me quite as powerfully as the previous book did, for reasons I'm not sure of. However, the first section was quite sad--Violet is bullied and rejected for her whole childhood, and not even Kendra can stop her from becoming alarmingly bitter. By the end of part 1 and during part 2, she does some horrible deeds out of revenge and anger. You still pity her at this point, even though what she did was terrible, because there was that whole backstory in part 1. I loved and hated that.

Celine I fully loved, though. She is kind, humble, and innocent, which was refreshing to read after Violet's descent into evil. Her "prince" is not a random stranger like it is in the original tale. I also loved that fact.

Even though Violet is an adult for the majority of the book, both she and Celine learn important life lessons from their experiences, and...stuff...happens because of that. I'll stop typing to avoid spoilers now. But I did really like that part.

I do recommend this book, even if you haven't read the previous ones--the only connection between them all is Kendra the witch, and they're each separate stories. ( )
  KendraJ. | Dec 10, 2019 |
Review courtesy of Dark Faerie Tales

Quick & Dirty: A predictable and underwhelming novel that was enjoyable, but didn’t stand out among all of the retellings.

Opening Sentence: I was a strange child.

The Review:

Violet has never been beautiful. Her eyelashes seem non-existent, her nose is misshapen, and her chin is weak. Her mother is too beautiful and glamorous to appreciate her ugly daughter. To top it off, Violet isn’t well-liked at school – she is bullied constantly. The only friend she ever really had is named Greg, and she’s falling in love with him, until he ditches her for the popular crowd and leaves her all alone. When Violet discovers Kendra, a witch, and learns that she too has magic powers, it changes her world. Suddenly she has the power to make herself beautiful. Although she thinks her new supermodel appearance could change everything, she is still hated around the campus, and Greg is still dating her nemesis Jennifer.

Flash-forward many years, when Greg and Jennifer have married and have had a daughter, the gorgeous Celine. Her beauty is almost ethereal, and its completely natural. When Celine’s mother dies in a freak accident at the zoo, Violet and Greg reconnect and soon marry, giving Celine a stepmother. She doesn’t understand the strange things that keep happening to her with Violet around: the scowls, the jealous and spiteful words, her cats attacking her and her hair appliances burning her. It seems almost . . . like magic. When Celine is almost killed, she takes refuge with the goofy, short boy from her drama class, Goose. But is that enough to save her from Violet’s vengeance?

When I saw the author’s name, I immediately recognized it from somewhere, and soon connected it to Beastly. I’d heard good things about the book, and Vanessa Hudgens starred in the movie, so I assumed that the novel must have been incredible. That being said, I expected a gorgeous, unique writing style – after all, Alex Flinn has written her fair share of books! She must be talented, right? Sadly, I found that the writing style was very simple, using language that didn’t seem experienced or mature. The novel would have fit more as a middle grade book, in my opinion, as it scooted around topics of sex, drugs, and alcohol anyway.

Luckily, there were some things about the novel that kept me reading and made it enjoyable. I actually liked Violet’s character the most; she was the most interesting. Her story was touching and sad, and watching her develop from the victim to the villain was a truly intriguing story arc. I found Celine’s part much less fun. Her character was almost too perfect: gorgeous, compassionate, empathetic. While I understand the part her perfection played in the plotline, it was not believable how little flaws she had, and that made her a hard character to relate to. The magic aspect of the story was okay, but not very original.

Altogether, I found the book alright and think it was a decent read. There was a love story as well, obviously, which was cute enough. I liked Goose’s character and found him more relatable despite the many differences between us, just because he was flawed. I enjoyed his backstory and seeing from his perspective as he developed as a character. Again, the magic and the characters weren’t anything too special, and the writing style was simpler than I had expected. I also found the plotline to be very predictable. I understand that it’s a retelling, and it will be closely related to the original, but there wasn’t anything that really stood out about this novel among a slew of Snow White retellings. However, I think that readers will enjoy it, especially younger ones (I’m still convinced it would fit in the middle grade genre!).

Notable Scene:

“I want to be beautiful. Can that happen?”

It sounded so bare, out in the open like that, out in the empty street. Yet, it was the only thing I wanted, had ever wanted. Well, that and Greg. I knew beauty was nothing. But it was also everything.

“Yes, yes, I can do that.”

FTC Advisory: HarperTeen provided me with a copy of Mirrored. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review. ( )
  DarkFaerieTales | Dec 1, 2015 |
Loved the mixing of fairy tale threads in this Snow White tale. Interesting point of view switches evenly divided by the three main characters. I love reading Flinn's tales and waiting to see what story lines she will weave into the main story line. Flinn proves to be both clever and entertaining. Can't wait to see Kendra in the next book. Audience: high school, middle school, fans of fairy tales, Snow White fans, retelling fans ( )
  cablesclasses | Sep 18, 2015 |
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A modern, multi-generational tale of Kendra, the witch from "Snow White," who trains Violet, an ugly, lonely, and heartbroken girl in the 1980s who transforms herself into "the fairest one of all" but still cannot win Greg's heart, and Celine, Greg's daughter with Violet's high school rival, Jennifer.

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