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With aspirations of being an animator, sixteen-year-old Nivi Nash thought she knew all about fairy tales. Take one beautiful damsel in distress, add a charming hero, and don’t forget a cackling villain. Throw in some pretty colors, a few songs, and mix well.

But caught in a real one, she learns the hero—though still hot—isn’t always charming, the story far from pretty, and the villain absolute evil. On the run for her life in a stolen SUV, she isn’t worried about her beauty, but happily ever after? Yes, she wants that the most. It means she’ll live.

The kiss always at the end of these tales?

Most of the time, okay maybe half of the time, the thought of that lip lock is far, far away where these stories are supposed to be. But tied to a stake on the side of a snowy mountain, the thought of her not-so-charming hero’s kiss burns away the reality of the knife hovering above her skin.

Appropriate for grade nine and up.

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