by A. W. Exley
Published by Self Pub Release date : June 6th, 2015
Genres: Fantasy, Historical, Horror, Young Adult
Source: The Tour Host | Format: eARC
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The flu pandemic of 1918 took millions of souls within a few short weeks.
Except it wasn't flu and death gave them back.
Seventeen-year-old Ella copes the best she can; caring for her war-injured father, scrubbing the floors, and slaying the undead that attack the locals. ‘Vermin’ they're called, like rats they spread pestilence with their bite. Ella's world collides with another when she nearly decapitates a handsome stranger, who is very much alive.
Seth deMage, the new Duke of Leithfield, has returned to his ancestral home with a mission from the War Office — to control the plague of vermin in rural Somerset. He needs help; he just didn't expect to find it in a katana-wielding scullery maid.
Working alongside Seth blurs the line between their positions, and Ella glimpses a future she never dreamed was possible. But in overstepping society's boundaries, Ella could lose everything – home, head and her heart…
I received this book for free from The Tour Host in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
“We all pulled together to nurse the sick and bury the fallen.
Except it wasn’t the flu.
And they didn’t stay dead.”
Zombies? Sign me up. Ella, The Slayer was such a fun, unique retelling of the Cinderella story many know and love. Set soon after the outbreak of the Spanish Influenza, Ella is caring for her father, taking care of her home, living with a monster of a step mother and all the while, clearing the town of the “vermin.”
Ella, The Slayer is a masterfully written retelling that is engaging, fun, gory and with a slow burn romance that I loved. Ella is not your average girl. Is is a katana welding, badass girl that bears the burden of ridding her town of the vermin. She is strong, spunky and has her wits about her. She has a vulnerable side too. Her deep desire to be mothered and wanted by her step mother but never getting it. And not to mention, taking on the task that was necessary but others condemned her for. I admire the fact that she stayed behind to care for everyone. Her compassion knows no bounds.
While the romance played a major part in the book, I loved that it didn’t overshadow the main plot as a whole. It’s slow burn, one that had me smiling often. I loved their deep conversations as they were getting to know each other and how the war has changed them both, but in different ways. They work well together in their fight against the vermin and Seth always treated her like his equal.
There were some parts that for me, were left open-ended. I actually liked this — because it leaves me to my imagination on where the story can/will go. I am hoping for a sequel because I would love to revisit the world A.W. Exley created.
Overall — I loved Ella The Slayer. It’s engaging, fun with a dash of gore and a romance that I truly adored. If you are looking for a unique retelling, this is IT. Highly recommend.
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