Thursday, February 22, 2024

Book Review: The Princess Protection Program by Alex London

Title: The Princess Protection Program
Author: Alex London
Genre: Children's Fiction; Fantasy; Fairy Tales
Publication Date: February 13, 2024
Publisher: HarperCollins

Every fairy tale ends with its characters living happily ever after, right? A valiant prince quests long and hard to reach the castle where the sleeping princess lies. And with a kiss, he awakens her.

But what if the princess does not think a kiss from a stranger is a very pleasant way to wake up? Yuck!

When Rosamund flees her prince, a Door of Opportunity opens, and she steps through it to the Home Educational Academy (the HEA for short). Rosamund has found the Princess Protection Program, where fugitive fairy-tale princesses escape unwanted affections, untimely ends, and all the other perils of their stories.

But the longer Rosamund lives in the real world, the more questions she has. Does anyone ever graduate from the HEA? Why doesn’t anyone seem to remember the former students? Is the kindly fairy headmistress all she appears to be? Is anyone? And the most important question of all: Can Rosamund change her story?

Acclaimed and bestselling author Alex London weaves together several beloved fairy tales in this fast-paced, funny, and slyly subversive adventure about finding your place in the world.


*I received a copy of this book digitally for free and am leaving this review voluntarily*

Hello Fellow Readers,

I've read many fairy tale retellings, but this felt like a breath of fresh air. A fun new take on the princess fairy tales we all grew up with, rather than picking a story and trying to modernize it London decided to do a 'What if'. Rosamund is an interesting character whose fairy tale, Sleeping Beauty, we are all very much knowledgeable about and the side characters are all princesses (and princes) whom we've all grown up reading about so seeing them all actually gets personalities. 

The plot was slow at first as, like Rosmund, we are learning about a whole other world and the HEA. It did not pick up quite how I wanted it to, but for any middle-grade child who is reading it, then the pace might be perfect. I like the message that The Princess Protection Program is trying to tell, and London did a great job conveying that you can absolutely break out of the story you think is intended for you and have a different happily ever after. 

Overall, a great children's book for any kid who likes to ask 'Why?'

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