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The Evil Queen

The Forest of Good and Evil, Book 1
Narrated by: Caitlin Kelly
Series: The Forest of Good and Evil, Book 1
Length: 20 hrs and 30 mins
Categories: Young Adults, Ages 11-13
4 out of 5 stars (4 ratings)

Non-member price: $65.16

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Publisher's Summary

WELCOME TO THE FOREST OF GOOD AND EVIL.

A DREAM COME TRUE.... AND A LIVING NIGHTMARE.

Far, far away, in the realm of Enchantia, creatures of legend still exist, magic is the norm and fairy tales are real. Except, fairy tales aren’t based on myths and legends of the past - they are prophecies of the future.

Raised in the mortal realm, Everly Morrow has no idea she’s a real-life fairy-tale princess - until she manifests an ability to commune with mirrors.

Look. See.... What will one peek hurt?

Soon, a horrifying truth is revealed. She is fated to be Snow White’s greatest enemy, the Evil Queen.

With powers beyond her imagination or control, Everly returns to the land of her birth. There, she meets Roth Charmaine, the supposed Prince Charming. Their attraction is undeniable, but their relationship is doomed. As the prophecy unfolds, Everly faces one betrayal after another, and giving in to her dark side proves more tempting every day. Can she resist, or will she become the queen - and villain - she was born to be?

The battle between good and evil is on. 

©2019 Stella Cameron (P)2019 Harlequin Enterprises, Limited

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Profile Image for Krista Jasper
  • Krista Jasper
  • 25-07-2019

Is she or isn’t she?

I was pleasantly surprised by this version of Snow White. Gena Showalter alluded to various versions of the tale including the original penned by the Brothers Grimm which is a darker take on the story which most of us are familiar. I believe she used this version as her
inspiration as Evil Queen is dark, but it is so much more. It has depth and the characters are fluid, just when one thinks they know what to expect... everything shifts!

Everly and her twin sister, Hartley, were raised in the Mortal Realm. Unbeknownst to them, their mother, Aubrey, was a fairy Tale princess from Enchantra (? Spelling). They were told the truth when the threat over their lives was finally gone. Each had their own magic, but Everly’s was more powerful. When her sister was taken, Everly vowed she would save her. So she found a way to get to the realm of Enchantra. That’s when the story gets even more exciting - familiar but not.

Caitlin Kelly is a fantastic narrator. I recently listened to the Cruel Prince series which she performed. Excellent. Her voices and accents are fantastic and plentiful. Even her male voices are good where I find many narrators fall short - opposite gender voices. Ms. Kelly’s list of credits is extensive which makes sense because she is talented.

If you like Fairy Tales revisited, you will enjoy this book. If you enjoy well written Fantasy with characters to get invited in and surprises at every turn, you will enjoy this book. If you just like reading, or listening to a great story, you will enjoy this book. So, get the book. This audio version is excellent and I believe the narrator truly added to my enjoyment of it!

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Profile Image for Memeke
  • Memeke
  • 17-02-2020

Hmn...

Everly Morrow has oozed a bad aura since she was a child, and everyone she comes into contact with is suspicious of her. In contrast, her sister, Hartly, unites humans and animals of the like. Everly is content with looking at magical images that form in her compact mirror and plans to open her own business to take care of herself once she finishes high school. Unfortunately, Everly is whisked away to the other world of Enchantia where she is told that her fate is tied to that of the prophecy/fairy tale, Snow White. She hopes that she isn’t the Evil Queen in the scenario, but all signs point to her.

The narration is performed by Caitlin Kelly. I was not fond of her performance when she narrates Everly’s lines and thoughts. I did like the portrayals of other characters, especially Prince Roth.

There are far better retellings of fairy tales for teens. The Evil Queen faced a tonal problem. The plot dictates that Everly spent her childhood in the mortal realm, which is a non-magical realm and similar to our reality. When she travels to Enchantia, her modern jargon, slang, and thought process was jarring. There was no benefit to Everly and her sister Hartly living in the human world other than to try and make contemporary teens sympathize with Everly through catch phrases like “spoiler alert.” The attempt was a hard miss, and Everly would have been better off being raised in a remote land in Enchantia rather than introducing a modern world that is not relevant to the rest of the plot. The plot itself was confusing and riddled with plot holes. This novel could have benefited from a better editor and some major cuts to whittle down a 20 hour audiobook to a more satisfying 10 hour book with a clean, better thought out story. The Evil Queen did have potential, but it felt sloppy and rushed. As such, I would recommend other retellings of fairy tales such as Entwined by Heather Dixon or The Goose Girl by Shannon Hale.

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  • Marly Bird
  • 31-01-2020

Best book I’ve ever read

It was amazing... Entirely captivated for all 543 pages didn’t want to put down. Amazing twist on a fairy tale we all know and love!

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  • Jennifer
  • 24-01-2020

Wow! I Could Not Stop Listening!

I don’t often do retelling of fairy tale stories all that often, but this was an amazing surprise. I really enjoyed the narrator and the world building. All the characters were unique. I loved the dilemma of trying to figure out which character was the evil queen or Snow White or one of the other characters from the story. It always kept me guessing and second guessing myself when I thought I got it right. I cannot wait for the next story from this series.

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  • innerdragon
  • 03-01-2020

excruciating

I have always heard good things of Gena Showalter, so I was anxious to begin the series, and hopefully find a whole new writer and genre and series to love and explore. Alas, this story was so painful I could not even bring myself to finish it. The premise seemed to be that the narrator was not sure if she was the evil queen in the snow white story, or snow white herself. Less than a third of the way in, all the signs pointed to evil queen to me, but she continued to deny it, then do something bad, then deny it, then do something bad, etc. Get on with the story, and if there is some lovely wrinkle that would make me root for the narrator, it needs to show up a little earlier. Painfully bad.

1 person found this helpful

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  • nayatron
  • 23-10-2019

Must read!!

This is a must read for anybody ever absolutely loves a twist on any Disney story.

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  • Britttany
  • 17-10-2019

Good Young Adult Read!

Very good book. While the Caitlin was amazing. A male voice in this would have been perfect.

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  • sarah
  • 19-09-2019

Loved it Be prepared to not be able to put it down

This was an awesome book. I love almost anything Gena does however I was hesitant to read this one for whatever reason. I loved it!!! The book kept me guessing the whole time. Also I’m super happy she didn’t leave a huge cliff hanger but instead left room for the story to grow. Only thing I didn’t like was the main character seemed a little dense. She did grow a lot through out the book though which made me like her more and more.

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  • Tanjuania
  • 13-09-2019

Simply Perfect

OMG! This book is everything. Gena Showalter has done it again. This is a new take on an old story, without question we are asked to rethink old tropes. To look beyond what we know or think that we know. I love the challenges that the heroine has to accept and reconcile. She is funny, snarky, smart, strong, weak, loved and hated. Even from the start, she knew so much about herself but learns so much more.

You never really know who is who and what part they play until the end. Which is awesome, because it keeps you guessing and thinking. Hoping and groaning. I laughed, cried, and cheered while listening to this book.

I can not wait for the next fairytale.

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  • nicole darland
  • 29-08-2019

Gena has done it again

Another amazing book by Gena Showalter. I’ve never been disappointed by her books and this one was no different. The world she creates in this story is amazing leaves you wondering is she or is she not, who is that, but what about this!? It’s another Showalter book that grabs your face from page one and holds on until the last.

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  • Claire
  • 24-08-2019

gets confusing

there is a lot of tooing & froing with this book and although it captures your attention at points it gets a little confusing as to where every what is actually going on. it was an enjoyable read but I won't be remembering it in great detail 4 years.... meh!