Cinderella's Dress cover



Author: Shonna Slayton

Publisher: Entangled Teen

Pub. Date: June 3, 2014

Pages: 340

Find it: AmazonBarnes & NobleGoodreads

Being seventeen during World War II is tough. Finding out you’re the next keeper of the real Cinderella’s dress is even tougher.

Kate simply wants to create window displays at the department store where she’s working, trying to help out with the war effort. But when long-lost relatives from Poland arrive with a steamer trunk they claim holds the Cinderella’s dress, life gets complicated.

Now, with a father missing in action, her new sweetheart shipped off to boot camp, and her great aunt losing her wits, Kate has to unravel the mystery before it’s too late.

After all, the descendants of the wicked stepsisters will stop at nothing to get what they think they deserve.

Bella Q&A
1. Quickly, give us the title and genre of your book and a 30-word or less tagline:
Cinderella’s Dress is a fairy tale set in 1940’s New York. Teenaged Kate Allen learns her family has been hiding the real Cinderella’s dress for centuries, and now it is her turn.
2. Who is your intended audience and why should they read your book?
This book is a clean teen read, for those who like historicals and fairy tales. I learned a lot of fascinating tidbits about the 1940s when writing this, and I hope there are several places where readers will go, “Cool, I didn’t know that!” while they are reading.
3. How did you come up with the title of your book or series?
Cinderella’s Dress is actually the name of a picture book by Nancy Willard, illustrated by Jane Dyer, with the cover image of a girl in a ball gown sliding down a bannister. It was one of the story sparks for my YA novel. When I saw the image, I thought it was maybe Cinderella’s great, great granddaughter and I wondered what adventures the dress could create. (The picture book is actually about the animals who make the dress.) Since the book wasn’t what I thought it was, I decided to write the idea myself. Cinderella’s Dress became my working title and it never changed.
4. Tell us a little bit about your cover art. Who designed it? Why did you go with that particular image/artwork?
A sample cover was already created when they brought me in on it. The talented Alexandra Shostak was the designer. They were going for a vintage feel with the black and white background and the touch of color in the dress. Two things changed from the original design. One was the model/dress. The first dress wasn’t “Cinderella” enough. We found the current image on Pinterest—loved it—and traced it back to an artist on the website Deviant Art. The second change was making the size of the word “Cinderella” larger.
5. Who is your favorite character from your book and why?
Hmm. It changes, but today it is Aunt Elsie. She wasn’t supposed to have as much “air time” in the book as she does. Of all my characters, she took the book in directions I hadn’t planned.
6. How about your least favorite character? What makes them less appealing to you?
This is a tough one. Maybe the dad. He is physically absent, seen only through his family and letters. He was hard to get a handle on. So, least favorite, not because I don’t like him, but because he is a bit of a mystery to me.
7. If you could change ONE thing about your novel, what would it be? Why?
It’s really hard to know that I can’t change anything now. When you are used to opening up your novel and revising freely…well, let’s just say the editors practically had to peel my fingers off the pages to make me let go. There is always something I could change. BUT, if you make me choose, I would change the color of the dress. My original writings were for a gold dress. I changed the text after seeing the cover 😉
8. whats the next project for you?
I’ve got two on the go right now. One is a historical adventure set in the late 1800s. The other is another fairy tale with the working title The Tower Princess. Here is my inspiration board at Pinterest:
Follow Shonna Slayton–YA Author’s board The Tower Princess on Pinterest.
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9.What are you reading right now?
I am on the final chapter of Pathfinder by Orson Scott Card, and am about midway through This Star Won’t Go Out: The Life and Words of Esther Grace Earl, the diaries and letters from the girl who influenced John Green’s writing of TFIOS.
10. Any advice for up coming authors?
For years I wrote weekly blogs on a group blog called Routines for Writers. It helped keep me motivated to keep writing, knowing I was giving writing routine advice to others. I wrote quite a few motivational posts aimed mostly at myself! The road can be long and lonely. Keep going. If you don’t give up you’ll get there.

About Shonna:

Shonna Slayton

Shonna Slayton finds inspiration in reading vintage diaries written by teens, who despite using different slang, sound a lot like teenagers today. While writing Cinderella’s Dress she reflected on her days as a high-school senior in British Columbia when she convinced her supervisors at a sportswear store to let her design a few windows—it was glorious fun while it lasted. When not writing, Shonna enjoys amaretto lattes and spending time with her husband and children in Arizona. You can visit her website at

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