Not since Tale of Desperaux have I opened a book and wanted to read aloud so much. In her prologue Mette Ivie Harrison evoked exactly the tone and voice of a classic fairy tale in the oral tradition. Appropriate, we find out, because this very tale is a fairy tale in Prince George's world.
Would you guess that the The Princess and the Hound is told from a boy's point of view? Me neither. It took us over a hundred pages to meet our titular characters. At least it did in the ARC I happily swiped from Midwinter. Pretty cover, nonetheless.
It is this year's Bella at Midnight for me. But stronger, I think. Prince George is keenly aware of his duty. He will become king. He will marry the daughter of his father's enemy to bind their countries together and, above all, Prince George will never allow his kingdom know his secret. It's a secret that is punished by death; a secret his grandfather died for. Little does he know that his betrothed has her own secret...
It was pretty clear how it would end. It was more of a matter of how, why and who than anything else. The characters aren't necessarily people you'd be friends with in real life (who am I kidding? I'd so be a peasant in their world. They wouldn't be friends with ME). They are socially awkward, damaged and very guarded. Despite this, they are clearly a product of their environment, and have, remarkably, risen above the situations of their upbringings. George, especially (as well he should), grows remarkably. He comes into his own and will be a tremendous king.
I'm a little surprised that there will be a sequel, simple because I thought that this one ended so perfectly. However, sequel there will be. The Bear and the Hound. No idea when it'll be out, but here's the first chapter. DO NOT READ IF YOU HAVEN'T READ THE 1ST BOOK. I suppose that there is another tale to tell, now that I read that...
Oooh, I want to read this so much!
You must have a designation for books that are worthy of my libraries. Maybe a little smilely face or something. This sound good.
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