Monday, August 29, 2011

Princess Ben by Catherine Gilbert Murdock

From Goodreads: Benevolence is not your typical princess and Princess Ben is certainly not your typical fairy tale. With her parents lost to unknown assassins, Princess Ben ends up under the thumb of the conniving Queen Sophia, who is intent on marrying her off to the first available "specimen of imbecilic manhood." Starved and miserable, locked in the castle's highest tower, Ben stumbles upon a mysterious enchanted room. So begins her secret education in the magical arts: mastering an obstinate flying broomstick, furtively emptying the castle pantries, setting her hair on fire... But Ben's private adventures are soon overwhelmed by a mortal threat facing the castle and indeed the entire country. Can Princess Ben save her kingdom from annihilation and herself from permanent enslavement? (Goodreads)
Plot: Princess Ben, Benevolence, that is, is not your average princess. After leaving on a trip, her mother and father are killed and her princessly duties become more important. With her Queen aunt breathing down her neck about embroidery and dancing and locking her inside a wall. Princess Ben escapes and is captures by Prince Florian's kingdom. Held by the knowledge that his kingdom killed her parents and that he thinks her a sullen oaf, she mouths off and is almost killed, but escapes back to her kingdom. They fight a dragon and they fall in love. (Literally, see below)
Characters: I loved Princess Ben as a character and her feisty nature was always entertaining. Prince Florian was also the ideal arrogant prince. I think their relationship could have been awesome and a very memorable love story. (But, see below.)
Overview: I loved Princess Ben as a person and her adventures were exciting, but I thought that the book was a bit rushed and slowed. It was slow in places where stuff really didn't matter and it made me bored. It was rushed in places where details would have made it so much better, like Prince Florian and Princess Ben's romance. I mean, Prince Florian is dying and then he's up and says that he loves her without even a little bit of flirting before. Also I found it offensive that she had to lose weight before she could catch his attention and become the ideal princess.

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