About the Book
Once upon a time in Texas . . .
Beauty has been nothing but a curse to Penelope Snow. When she becomes a personal maid for a famous actress whose troupe is leaving Chicago to tour the West, she hides her figure beneath shapeless dresses and keeps her head down. But she still manages to attract the wrong attention, leaving her prospects in tatters–and her jealous mistress plotting her demise.
After his brother lost his life over a woman, Texas Ranger Titus Kingsley has learned to expect the worst from women and is rarely disappointed. So when a young lady found in suspicious circumstances takes up residence with the seven old drovers living at his grandfather’s ranch, Titus is determined to keep a close eye on her.
With a promotion hanging in the balance, Titus is assigned to investigate a robbery case tied to Penelope’s acting troupe, and all evidence points to Penelope’s guilt. But Titus might just be convinced that the fairest woman of all has a heart as pure as her last name . . . if only he can prove it.
In My Opinion
A Snow White fairy tale retelling with 7 ranchers, a Texas Ranger, and a villain who loves mirrors? When I first heard about Fairest of Heart by Karen Witemeyer, I said sign me up.
One of my favorite things about these retellings is the opportunity to pick out similarities with the original. For example, in Witemeyer’s latest book, none of the “grandpas” is given as straight a name as the dwarves, but their personalities sure helped match them with their counterparts. And each of the grandpas was special in his own way, which Penelope quickly picked up on.
There was a lot of emphasis on appearance in this book. Both with Penelope and with Narcissa (the villainess). In fact, at times, it was so remarked upon and thought about that it took away from the moments when Texas Ranger Titus notices the below-the-surface characteristics of these women. Especially with Penelope.
Overall, this was a fun story with some tense moments peppered within the sweet and occasionally, the silly. Another enjoyable read from Witemeyer that has me wondering which fairy tale she’s going to tackle next.
Content warning: With the addition of the villainess’s perspective, Witemeyer’s usual spice level is cranked up a few notches, so you may want to vet this book before you pass it along to a daughter or younger friend. The author has said the other books in this series do not include the villain’s POV.
Disclosure statement: I receive complimentary books from publishers, publicists, and/or authors, including NetGalley. I am not required to write positive reviews. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.