Malinda Lo’s tale of a lesbian Cinderella comes out today

It’s a big day for former AfterEllen.com editor — and current columnist and vlog starMalinda Lo: her first novel, Ash hits stores (and Amazon) today.

Ash is a retelling of Cinderella, in which Aisling (Ash) is forced into servitude by her stepmother to make amends for her dead father’s debts. There is no prince, no birds to help her dress as she Bibbidi-Bobbidi -Boos around her cottage. But there are fairies, one in particular who wishes to steal Ash away from human life. Ash almost decides to give into him, but then she meets Kaisa, a female Huntress of the King. She’s beautiful, strong, independent — and best of all, she treats Ash as her equal.

I can’t tell you the rest, except to say that as the story progresses, Ash is forced to choose between fairy tales and abiding love.

Praise for Malinda Lo’s young adult debut has been effusive. Her book is sitting on four stars at Amazon and GoodReads:

“A rich and darkly moving tale I couldn’t put down. Malinda Lo is an exciting and welcome new voice in YA.” — Meg Cabot (The Princess Diaries)

“This lyrically retold Cinderella tale is not just a beautifully updated fable, but an ode to the transformative power of love.” — Cassandra Clare (Mortal Instruments series)

“Cinderella, gorgeously reimagined, captivating and winsome. After you’ve fallen into the storytelling world of Malinda Lo, the truth of love will transcend the romantic ideal of fairy tales.” — Julie Anne Peters (Keeping You a Secret, Luna)

(Photo credit: Patty Nason)

The young adult book market is one of the most competitive in the publishing industry today, and Malinda’s lush fairy tale has a Sapphic sensibility that is desperately needed. Noting is quite as powerful as seeing yourself reflected in a work of fiction, and Malinda has granted that privilege to countless young persons with her debut novel. It’s not a story that hits you over the head with LGBT themes; it’s a story about abiding love.

Malinda will be at the San Francisco LGBT Center on Sept. 10 for a book signing. (Also, she says she’ll be giving away treats!) You can find more information about the book and about upcoming events on her site malindalo.com.

Join us in congratulating Malinda, and let us know what you think of Ash in the comments!

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