Skip to main content

Garden Princess

I am always excited when a new princess tale comes out. I unashamedly love them. Garden Princess by Kristin Kladrup is a lovely new addition to this genre.

Synopsis (from Goodreads):
Princess Adela is not a typical princess. She’s neither particularly beautiful nor particularly graceful, and she’d rather spend her days digging new plots for her garden than listening to teatime gossip. But when her friend Garth is invited to a garden party hosted by Lady Hortensia — whose beauty is said to be rivaled only by the loveliness of her gardens — Adela can’t resist coming along, even if it means stuffing herself into a too-tight dress and donning impractical shoes. But the moment Adela sets eyes on Hortensia’s garden, she knows something is amiss. Every single flower is in bloom — in the middle of October! Not only that, there is a talking magpie flitting about the garden and stealing the guests’ jewels. Is it possible that Hortensia is a witch and the magpie an enchanted prince? And what of the flowers themselves? Will Adela get to the root of the mystery and nip trouble in the bud before it’s too late?

Garden Princess has an old fashioned fairy tale feel to it. There are enchantments that most be broken and an evil witch who must be defeated. Adela is not an average fairy tale princess though. She is not beautiful or graceful and her greatest love is making things grow in her garden. She doesn't have much interest in courtship or marriage. At least not yet. She wants to explore the world and see as much as she can first. Adela is accessible and sympathetic from the beginning. Through a bit of luck she is able to discover what Hortensia is doing with the guests invited to her garden party and realizes that if something is going to be done she must do it. I loved when she realized she wouldn't be rescued and had to rescue herself and set out to do that. She does with the help of a Magpie-who is actually an enchanted thief named Ned. I love when a story has a noble thief so this was an added bonus for me. Ned is a wonderful character and I really liked how realistically clueless he was a Magpie, and how Adela began to rekindle his human thoughts and emotions.

The rushed and somewhat sudden nature of the romance kept me from enjoying this as much as I otherwise might have. I also felt that Ned's actions after leaving the garden made little sense. I understand he was feeling insecure after what Hortensia did to him and that he wanted to find his mother, but I don't understand his need to go about it as he did. It seemed to me that it was just so the story could last a bit longer before a final resolution was reached. The end dragged a bit for me as a result.

This is a book that everyone should have on hand for young princess story enthusiasts. With an excellent main character they can identify with and cheer for it is sure to be enjoyed.

I read an e-galley made available by the publisher via NetGalley. Garden Princess is a available for sale now.

Comments

Christina said…
Awwww, too bad. I was really excited there for a moment, but I have enough on my TBR already that I don't need to be adding more books with unfortunate romance. Oh well.
Brandy said…
Yep I was disappointed. There are many other MG princess novels out there that do the romance so much better.
Charlotte said…
The moment I saw this one my eyes perked up--it sounds like one I'd like! (weather cooperting, I'm going to start getting my own garden ready for spring today...)
Brandy said…
Have fun with the gardening! I don't even try to grow things. Inside. Outside. Anywhere.
Charlotte said…
I've read it now....and it was fine, but the ending did drag, and the romance wasn't quite. Oh well!

Popular posts from this blog

TTT: Most Recent Additions to My TBR List

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly themed blog hop created by  The Broke and the Bookish  and now hosted at  That Artsy Reader Girl . This Week's Topic: Most Recent Additions to My TBR List From Most Recent to Least: What books have recently caught your eye?

Serafina and the Black Cloak

Serafina and the Black Cloak  by Robert Beatty is a thrilling tale of mystery and adventure set at the Biltmore Estate in Asheville, NC in 1899. Having lived in Asheville and visited the house several times, there was no way I was going to pass up a chance to read this. (Also it's MG fantasy, always a bonus for me.) Serafina lives in secret in the basement of the Vanderbilt's spacious vacation home. She has lived there most of her life. Her father worked on the house as it was being built and is the mechanic who runs the massive generator and keeps the electricity going. Serafina is the chief rat catcher, slipping through the halls of her massive home secretly and quietly. She is light on her feet, sees well in the dark, and is quick enough to catch the vermin and keep them out. Serafina knows she if different and strange. Her father insists she stay hidden. But all that changes when one night Serafina witnesses a horrible crime. A little girl, a guest in the house, is fleein

Shorter Musings MG Fantasy

Here are some shorter musings on recent MG fantasy reads. Anya and the Dragon   by Sofiya Pasternack This book is fun. It is a book full of adventure, an obvious bad guy, some more complicated morally gray area characters, and a strong, brave heroine. It is also a book about friendships, community, and fighting for what is right. All things that usually work for me really well. While I enjoyed this, I did feel it was a little overlong and there were certain plot points at the end I didn't love. However, there were things I thought were done really well, such as Anya's Jewish faith and the idea that power needs to be challenged. In the end it was a middle of the road read for me, but it is one I will certainly be recommending to dragon and fantasy adventure lovers I know! R is for Rebel   by J. Anderson Coats This is tough because I usually really like Coats's books. I had such a hard time with this one though on so many levels. It's difficult to get into because t

YA Book GIVEAWAY!!!

On Tuesday I posted my Top Ten Books Read so Far in 2013 and promised to highlight more of this year's favorites and offer them in giveaways. This is the YA giveaway. This is open to anyone who lives where Book Depository ships for free . Book Choices: TO ENTER: Leave a comment below saying which book looks most interesting to you and leave a way I can reach you if you are the winner. (email address or twitter handle-If you are using Twitter it would be helpful if you followed me, @brandymuses , in case I need to DM you.) Entries after Monday, July 1 8:00 PM EST are invalid. The winner will be drawn as close to 8 as possible.  Yes, I still do my giveaways the old fashioned way.

Shadowshaper

Shadowshaper  by Daniel José Older is everywhere. Best of lists. Award buzz. Blogs everywhere. It's one of those books everyone is reading and talking about. I had it on my TBR but decided I definitely needed to read it before the year was out just so I could weigh in on one of the most talked about books of 2015 if asked. It is deserving of every good thing said about it. Every. One. Sierra was looking forward to a relaxing summer break. Her plans involved hanging out with her friends and painting. They did not involve being chased by zombie like creatures and threatened by a magical power connected to her family's heritage she has never heard of. When murals begin fading all over her Brooklyn neighborhood, Sierra is perplexed. When her grandfather, who had a stroke, begins to apologize and starts repeating strange phases and insisting Sierra get the help of a boy she barely knows to help her finish her mural, Sierra is concerned but mostly about her grandfather. Then at a