Twitter Tumblr FlickrFacebookContact me
Now Previous Articles Road Essays Author Title Source Age Genre Series Format Inclusivity LGBTA Portfolio

Recent posts

Month in review

Reviews
Alone on a Wide Wide Sea by Michael Morpurgo
Babymouse Burns Rubber by Jennifer L. Holm and Matthew Holm
Babymouse Cupcake Tycoon by Jennifer L. Holm and Matthew Holm
Bite Me by Christopher Moore
Breakfast of Champions by Kurt Vonnegut
Bumped by Megan McCafferty
Equal Rites by Terry Pratchett
Fever Crumb by Philip Reeve
A Fine and Private Place by Peter S. Beagle
For Biddle's Sake by Gail Carson Levine
Fullmetal Alchemist 03 by Hiromu Arakawa
Fullmetal Alchemist 04 by Hiromu Arakawa
Ghostopolis by Doug TenNaple
The Green Ripper by John D. MacDonald
The Lost Elephants of Kenyisha by Ken Altabef
Mercury by Hope Larson
Meanwhile by Jason Shiga
The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Perilous Journey by Trenton Lee Stewart
The Night at the Museum by Milan Trenc
The Odyssey (All Action Classics 03) by Homer and Tim Mucci
Princess Academy by Shannon Hale
Queer Phenomenology by Sara Ahmed
The Red Pyramid by Rick Riordan
Tuesday by David Wiesner
Twin Spica 01 by Kou Yaginuma
Twin Spica 02 by Kou Yaginuma
Urgent 2nd Class by Nick Bantock
The Way They Wove the Spells in Sippulgar by Robert Silverberg
West Coast Journeys by Caroline C. Leighton
Writers of the Future by Charles Oberndorf

Miscellany
Canadian Book Challenge 5
Twenty-four Years of Reading
Why YA Matters to Me

Previous month

Rating System

5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish

Reading Challenges

My Kind of Mystery Reading Challenge 2017 February - January 2017-8



Princess Academy: 06/29/11

cover art

Miri is small for her age. She lives with her family in a mountain community known for its special quarried stone. Life is a struggle and things are about to get worse as girls of a certain age are forced to go to the princess academy as the king's priests have divined that the newest queen will be living among them. That's the set up of Shannon Hale's Princess Academy.

While it may sound like a traditional set up for a fairy tale where the smallest, least useful member of a town goes off to charm the crown prince and become the next queen, it isn't. It's about the hardships of mountain life, about wanting to contribute to society, the frustration of not knowing the truth behind things and finally the power of education. What Miri and the other girls gain above and beyond the lessons in grace and polite society, is an education and most importantly, the ability to read.

Hale uses the seasons to show the mountain in all its forms and to create a believable sense of place. She also includes folk songs and stories to build an oral history that is later enhanced and challenged by what Miri and the others learn in their studies.

Although the book is set in only a small piece of the kingdom I came away with a sense of a much larger area. Shannon Hale excels at world building while keeping the story flowing and the characters developing.

I listened to the audio version of Princess Academy on our drive to Southern California earlier this year. I plan to go back and read the printed version later.

Five stars.

Comments (0)


Name:
Email (won't be posted):
Blog URL:
Comment: