Ages: 5th – 8th grade; may appeal to girls more than boys.
Awards: Princess Academy was named a Newbery Honor Book in 2006.
Plot: Fourteen-year-old Miri is a misfit in her beloved mountain town. The people of Mount Eskel, home to
Our Take: The title of this book brings to mind pink gowns and sparkling tiaras, but many girls will be delighted to discover that this tale is far from fluffy. Miri displays the kind of grit, courage, and cunning not usually associated with syrupy princess stories. The plot structure, like the storyline itself, is unexpected in this gem of a book; just as it seems things have settled into a comfortable resolution, another unexpected surprise presents itself. Hale has managed to weave a tale that is at once fast-paced and introspective. The language is lovely, and the multi-layered tale ensures that there’s something for just about every reader.
Good to Know: The sequel, Palace of Stone, was published in 2012.