Tuesday, 5 July 2011

Book Review: Princess Academy

Miri lives on a mountain where, for generations, her ancestors have quarried stone and lived a simple life. Then word comes that the king's priests have divined her small village the home of the future princess. In a year's time, the prince himself will come and choose his bride from among the girls of the village. The king's ministers set up an academy on the mountain, and every teenage girl must attend and learn how to become a princess.

Miri soon finds herself confronted with a harsh academy mistress, bitter competition among the girls, and her own conflicting desires to be chosen and win the heart of her childhood best friend. But when bandits seek out the academy to kidnap the future princess, Miri must rally the girls together and use a power unique to the mountain dwellers to save herself and her classmates.

While I am a huge Shannon Hale fan, I was slightly disappointed by the overall story of Princess Academy, especially considering that it won the Newberry Honour Award. Although the plot was cute and the characters were lovable, I felt that this novel should have been classified as Juvenile rather than Young Adult fiction. I think that Princess Academy is definetely a book that I would have enjoyed reading a lot more in about grade five. Despite the juvenile focus, Shannon Hale's writing was at its usual best, with beautiful prose that kept me reading rather than simply moving on to another novel. I think the ending of this story was pretty obvious, but nonetheless it was nice to see everything wrap up into a happy conclusion at the end! If you enjoy juvenile fiction or stories about princesses then certainly give Princess Academy a try, perhaps you will enjoy it more than I did!

Rating: 3 Stars


Jenny said...

When I bought my copy it was in the middle grade/juvenile section so I knew, going into it, that it was for a younger audience. Still, it was a little slower and hard to get into.

Ikhlas said...

I love Shannon Hale as well, but the fact that this book was geared towards younger readers was one of the reasons why I didn't pick up this book.

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