Book: Princess of the Silver Woods by Jessica Day George
Genre: Fantasy, Fairytales
Book Description (from goodreads.com): When Petunia, the youngest of King Gregor’s twelve dancing daughters, is invited to visit an elderly friend in the neighboring country of Westfalin, she welcomes the change of scenery. But in order to reach Westfalin, Petunia must pass through a forest where strange two-legged wolves are rumored to exist. Wolves intent on redistributing the wealth of the noble citizens who have entered their territory. But the bandit-wolves prove more rakishly handsome than truly dangerous, and it’s not until Petunia reaches her destination that she realizes the kindly grandmother she has been summoned to visit is really an enemy bent on restoring an age-old curse.
Princess of the Silver Woods is actually the 3rd book in Jessica Day George’s Princess series. The first book is “Princess of the Midnight Ball” and the second, “Princess of Glass”.
I, however, did not know this. I was browsing the library shelves with my squirming daughter balanced on one hip and hoping I could find a book that looked good before her tolerance level wore down. Btw, judging books by their covers isn’t all bad if you only have a grand total of about 5 seconds to decide whether you will enjoy a certain book before your toddler attempts to tear it from your hands. I actually recommend it. I mean, just look at the cover of this book. At first glance it looks like a remake of Little Red Riding Hood. It just so happens that I am a huge fan of the remade fairytales genre (and have been, ever since I was 12 and stumbled across Ella Enchanted). So I basically spent 2 seconds looking over the cover and scanning the backflap, and then spent the remaining 3 seconds flipping through the book just to make sure the writing style was readable. I enjoy the YA genre, but trendy language is an instant turn-off. My brain just shuts down if it sees too many “OMGs” or “likes” used as verbal distractors.
The writing style looked fine, so I picked it up and brought it home to read. It is a really great little book! It is a little bit of a remake of Little Red Riding Hood, but I would say the main story is more of a remake of the 12 Dancing Princesses tale, which I would have known, if I had realized this was the third book in a series and actually read the books in order! (I hate reading series books out of order)
The main character in this book, Petunia, is feisty and one of those girl-power characters you really just have to love in fairytale remakes. I really enjoyed the fact, too, that though we did not become incredibly familiar with all of her 11 sisters, we still got a pretty good idea of their personalities, and they weren’t all the same. All intelligent, but with the differences that you actually do see between siblings.
The action/violence was about what you would expect from any fairytale type book. It exists, but it is of the dashing, debonair variety.
If you want a quick, fun read for a Sunday afternoon, and if you like books of the fantasy/fairytale type genre–look no farther. I fully intend to look up the first and second books in this series and catch up on the back story, but even without the backdrop of the first 2 Princess books, Princess of the Silver Woods stands alone.
My rating: 4 out of 5 stars