by Demelza Carlton
narrated by Mary Sarah
The second book in the Romance a Medieval Fairytale series, the Audiobook was published by Tantor in 2018
A dutiful daughter. A prince forced to find a bride. If the shoe fits…Once upon a time… When the Emperor’s army comes recruiting, Mai signs up, seeing it as the perfect escape from her stepmother and a lifetime of drudgery. Armed with her mother’s armor and a pair of magic shoes, Mai marches off to war…only to find herself sharing a tent with the General’s arrogant nephew, Prince Yi. The best swordsman in the Empire, Prince Yi wants to make war, not love, but the Emperor insists this will be Yi’s last campaign before he must marry. Prince Yi has never met his match…until now. Can one woman win the war and the prince’s heart?
Dance seems more like a subtle combination of Mulan and Cinderella rather than a strict Mulan retelling.
It could definitely stand on its own though. The fantasy Romance aspect was pretty strong on this and I honestly loved it. Dance was captivating and very interesting. Mai had awesome characterization and the detail that Demelza Carlton put into this was astounding. She included information, slight but still there, about bound feet!
For those of you who don’t know, which admittedly is a lot of us, the only reason I know is because I read a book in my freshman year of high school that had to do with bound feet and family and a whole bunch of other themes. Anyway, here’s a little information on bound feet: This was a practice of breaking young girls feet and binding so that the bone would heal in that contorted shape. It was painful and lasted since the 10th century until the 20th. It was meant to denote higher class. The girls could barely walk with what they called “golden lotus” feet. Men loved women with tiny feet because it meant they were delicate and gentile. As well as barely being able to move. It’s said that because of this footbinding practice, the Chinese created the first birth control. There are some stories about men using the bound feet to masturbate.
Demelza Carlton included snippets of this history and I loved it. I really hope that the rest of the series is like this one because I loved it so much more than Enchant
Let me know what you think!