Thursday, March 14, 2013

Princess of the Midnight Ball by Jessica Day George

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Princess of the Midnight Ball 
by Jessica Day George
288 pages
Personal Copy
Fairy Tale Retelling
2009

Book Jacket Summary
A tale of twelve princesses doomed to dance until dawn…

Galen is a young soldier returning from war; Rose is one of twelve princesses condemned to dance each night for the King Under Stone. Together Galen and Rose will search for a way to break the curse that forces the princesses to dance at the midnight balls. All they need is one invisibility cloak, a black wool chain knit with enchanted silver needles, and that most critical ingredient of all—true love—to conquer their foes in the dark halls below. But malevolent forces are working against them above ground as well, and as cruel as the King Under Stone has seemed, his wrath is mere irritation compared to the evil that awaits Galen and Rose in the brighter world above.

Captivating from start to finish, Jessica Day George’s take on the Grimms’ tale The Twelve Dancing Princesses demonstrates yet again her mastery at spinning something entirely fresh out of a story you thought you knew.
 
My Thoughts
Galen is returning to Westfalin from the twelve year war with Analousia. He is a professional solider, spending his entire life in the war camps. On his way to find his mother's family he runs into an old woman, the good frau, and secures his invisibility cloak. Rose is the oldest sister and caretaker of the other eleven sisters. They are under a curse to dance for the King of Understone every third night. It is up to Galen to help Rose break the cure with his knitting skills, yes, knitting skills. He is a solider and there is no one else to knit socks, scarves, or caps.
I adore this book and I am amazed that each princess has a distinct personality. We get to know Poppy and Petunia in the next two books but we still have a clear view of each princess. Galen is brave and has impeccable manners which is what helps in the original story. There is an extra edge of an archbishop coming down to accuse the princesses of witchcraft and making the king abdicate his throne.
I would recommend this one to anyone who loves fantasy or fairy tale retellings. It is one of the best I have ever read and I love all three of the books!

Book Pairings
Wisdom's Kiss by Catherine Gilbert Murdock 
Shadows on the Moon by Zoë Marriott
The Near Witch by Victoria Schwab


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