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Monday, 28 March 2011

MG Monday: Review: Princess for Hire by Lindsey Leavitt


Title: Princess for Hire
Series: Princess for Hire
Author: Lindsey Leavitt
Publisher: Egmont Books Ltd
Publication Date: 1 Feb 2010

Source: Library



Synopsis: From Amazon
Wanted: teenage girl to serve as substitute princess. Must be willing to travel. Please call Meredith. Ever wanted to be a princess? To float away from your ordinary life and swan about in a tiara, with everyone telling you how fabulous you are? Desi desperately wants to escape her boring, unfulfilling life in Hicksville, Idaho. And now she has the chance - she's got a job substituting for various real princesses when they need a holiday. But not all princesses live in a palace, and not all princes are gorgeous...plus the whole fairy godmother thing is seriously misleading. Thrown into the job with little training, Desi finds that she'll need an awful lot of luck - and a bit of magic - to get by. Maybe having your wishes granted isn't always as straight forward as it seems.

Review:
I knew I was going to love this book from the word Go. What little girl doesn't dream of being a Princess, I look at my 5 year old playing dress up and she favours the sparkly princess dress and tiaras. She will then get out the toy castle and have a princess tea party for her sisters and teddies. Although the 10 year old gets slightly 'miffed' at this as it is no longer 'cool' to want to be a princess at 10 (lol). I haven't broken it to her yet that the 5 year old is having a Princess tea party for her birthday in May and she is to be part of the entertainment *insert evil laugh*

Written in first person narrative from Desi's perspective, she has a fun, sarcastic narrative voice. You already know I love sarcasm so I adored the snarky one liners Desi came out with. We don't have anything unusual in the storyline but that doesn't matter the way in which the characters and their interactions are portrayed is so quirky giving it a uniqueness of its own.

The basic elements of a standard fairytale - working for little money, the mean girl, the romantic crush on the popular boy - are all elements within the narrative, but given a totally modern twist which makes it fun. This isn't a book to be taken seriously but a nice refreshing break from reality where dreams can come true.
The way in which the portrayal of bullying stemming from Desi's fathers job really struck home with me, working in a school and having to tell certain students off always causes friction, I would not want my children to be bullied for anything relating to my job - so I don't think they will be coming to the school I work in.

One of my favourite aspects of the book was the beautifully visual descriptions, really wonderful pictures to conjure in the imagination and escape reality. The OCD fairy godmother character was fantastic and unnervingly easy to relate to [ : D ] I am know carefully scouring pet shops for magic fish. Plus who wouldn't want to travel in a bubble. Told you it was quirky.

The use of old movie references peppering the narrative added a sense of realism . The way in which Desi's self-confidence grew as a result of helping others was inspiring. From experience it is sometimes easier to deal with other peoples problems than your own, maybe because you are too close to a situation, through helping others you can gain insight into yourself as Desi did.

I will be giving this one to the 8 year old when she gets a little older. A lovely light read providing a much needed escape from reality. An enchanting modern fairytale. Now where are those magic fish [ ; D]

4 comments:

  1. I think this might be one for me and my girls. We are all rather sarcastic! I love the film references too!

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  2. Lovely review! I loved this book and can't wait to give it to my girl when she's a bit older.

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  3. Lovely review - it sounds like a fun read. P.S if you find the magic fish let me know ;)

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