Thursday, October 20, 2011

'Utterly Charming' by Kristine Grayson

Synopsis from Goodreads:

This time when Sleeping Beauty wakes up, she wants nothing to do with the man who kissed her. Consoling Alex Blackstone, the rejected suitor who is a brilliant magician but inept when it comes to women, falls to modern career woman and lawyer, Nora Barr. Nora now has to deal with Beauty's evil stepmother, and the discovery that Alex just might be her own personal Prince Charming...

First thoughts when I finished: "Not what I was hoping for."

I read Wickedly Charming earlier this year and loved it, so when Sourcebooks was offering another Grayson book I just had to read it. What I've gathered since finishing the book is that she wrote Utterly Charming way back in 2000. Why is this relevant? Because she wrote Wickedly Charming eleven years later and boy has her writing skills improved. I'm very glad that I read her later work first because if I had started with Utterly Charming I might not pick up another book written by her. This story just lacked charm. The charm that drew me to Wickedly Charming was nonexistent in this book. I never really felt that I was in a 'fractured fairy-tale' and the whole premise, once I was knee-deep in the book just never came to fruition. I didn't find Prince Charming irresistible and honestly, I didn't really care for the main character Nora in the least. The story revolved around legalities of fairyland versus the real world and it bored me to tears! I found myself skimming the last third of the book, which is never a good thing!

Recommend?   I have every confidence that her later works are better than the one I just finished so I would read this author again but I would hesitate to recommend this one to my friends. Instead, I would direct you to Wickedly Charming which was everything I wanted and more!

Rating: 5/10

As always, I like to give my readers other viewpoints of books that I didn't care for, so here they are!

The Romance Reader: "This light-hearted romance stands behind its title 100%: it is utterly charming. It's also somewhat uneven and not without faults, but the charm goes a long way towards compensating for any shortcomings."

Royal Reviews: "Overall, this book was a fun read and I believe that it will make the perfect fall read. A light romance that will leave you happy as a lark."

Bitten By Books:"Utterly Charming has all the elements of a typical fairy tale and will keep you enthralled to the very last page!"

Utterly Charming by Kristine Grayson
Source: review copy from Sourcebooks
Genre: Fractured Fairytale Romance
Pages: 320
Published: re-release October 1, 2011 Sourcebooks
ISBN:  9781402248511
*Uncorrected ARC

Disclaimer:Thank you to Sourcebooks Casablanca for sending me a review copy. I was not compensated for my review. My thoughts on this book were in no way influenced by the author or publicist.They are my personal reflections based solely on MYexperience while reading this novel.

© 2011, Staci of Life in the Thumb. All Rights Reserved. If you reading this on a site other than, Life in the Thumb or Staci's feed, be aware that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.


  1. I love your review style, Staci. From your first thoughts to the recommendation - I appreciate your candor.

  2. Looks like it's not always easy for a writer to score twice with her books. Maybe the third will be the charm...

  3. Bummer it was a disappointment after liking her other book so well! Have a great Thursday my friend! :):):):):)

  4. Actually, in spite of your negative review, it sounds kind of interesting to me - I'd like to know what are the legalities of fairy land!

  5. Interesting that you could see such a difference in the writer's ability to charm you. Sorry this one didn't work for you but glad that Wickedly Charming was a winner.

  6. I'm sorry this didn't live up to your expectations. I hate when follow ups aren't as good.

  7. I picked Wickedly Charming at Border's after I read your review :)

  8. Sorry you did not like it as much :/ But I do agree that book 1 was better

  9. I'm going to take your advice and pick up Wickedly Charming instead. Thanks for the recommendation!!

  10. I read Utterly Charming when it first came out and really really liked it. In fact, I still have it and have read it a few times since. I haven't read Wickedly Charming yet, but it's good to hear Grayson's writing has improved in the past decade-ish...

  11. Sorry this one was disappointing, but at least her books get better!

  12. Sorry this one wasn't the best for you Staci. Thankfully you read the other and know the author is worth following.

  13. For me, this was the right book at the right time. I enjoyed it, and after reading what you thought will definitely pick up Wickedly Charming.

  14. I'm sometimes afraid to read the other books of an author if I really loved a book. I want nothing to tarnish my experience ...

  15. I like the story-line of the book. Too bad she couldn't deliver. Actually, I fault the publisher for trying to cash on on the author's last book. They should have had her re-write the original book.


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