Book Review: Rapunzel Untangled by Cindy C. Bennett

Rapunzel is not your average teenager.

For one thing, she has a serious illness that keeps her inside the mysterious Gothel Mansion. And for another, her hair is 15 feet long. Not to mention that she’s also the key to ultimately saving the world from certain destruction. But then she meets a boy named Fane, who changes all she has ever known, and she decides to risk everything familiar to find out who she really is.

Filled with romance, adventure, and mystery,
Rapunzel Untangled is one story you won’t want to put down. Discover the true meaning of love and friendship in this modern twist to the classic fairytale.

Release Date: February 12, 2013
Age Group: YA
Source: NetGalley

I've never been a huge fan of the classic fairytale Rapunzel, so I wasn't sure what to expect from Rapunzel Untangled. I ended up liking the book and would definitely recommend it.

I liked the modern twist to the fairytale; specifically, what kept Rapunzel isolated from the rest of the world. Rapunzel has SCID: Severe Combined Immunodeficiency (read more about it here), more commonly known as the Bubble Boy disease. This was an unexpected element to the story and a neat way to explain why Rapunzel has not been exposed to the world or even met anyone besides her mother or physician. 

What bothered me about Rapunzel having SCID was that it was not truly accurately represented. The characters called it SCIDs, not SCID, and Rapunzel was oddly immune to her mother's germs but no one else's (if she truly had SCID anyone's germs would make her deathly ill). Having an immune deficiency myself, I know about SCID and this element of the story bothered me. While I could tell that Bennett had researched the issue there were some parts of the SCID element that were not accurate.

I found the story to be somewhat predictable, but still enjoyable. I liked the slow progression of the love story. I would have preferred a first-person narrative but did still enjoy the writing style. The witchcraft elements were pretty dark and much more creepy than I initially expected. Fans of the paranormal genre will enjoy that part of the story.

My other main complaint about Rapunzel Untangled was how things ended up regarding Rapunzel's parents.  It felt like they were summarily dismissed, especially given Rapunzel's flashbacks to her mother's love.

While I did have a couple of complaints I did enjoy Rapunzel Untangled and would recommend it to fans of fairytale retellings and fans of YA. I would definitely read Cindy Bennett again. 


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