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Ivy's Ever After Hardcover – May 15, 2010

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 4-6–Princess Ivory has grown up in the isolated kingdom of Ardendale as the only child of an absentminded king. Per the Dragon Treaty, she is locked in a tower when she turns 14, there to languish until the nefarious prince from a neighboring land kills her dragon guard and marries her. But as Ivy has no intention of marrying this prince, she escapes from the tower with the help of the dragon (a runty and peaceful creature named Elridge) and goes off with him to discover a way to foil the prince's plan to destroy Ardendale. They have many perilous adventures and meet some intriguing characters, including a romance-prone fairy godmother named Drusilla and an adorable but hideously grumpy miniature goat named Toadstool. Their fates being intertwined, Ivy and Elridge hit it off right away, and by the end of the story they are clearly best friends forever. This is a fun and entertaining fairy-tale-based fantasy with a nice balance of character development and action. Give it to fans of Donna Jo Napoli's The Prince of the Pond (Puffin, 1994) or Diane Zahler's The Thirteenth Princess (HarperCollins, 2010).Eva Mitnick, Los Angeles Public Library (starred review)
© Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

From Booklist

When Princess Ivy turns 14, she will be locked in a tower and guarded by a dragon until a prince can rescue and marry her. Only days before her birthday, the arrogant and power-hungry Prince Romil shows up, coveting the throne and position of King of Ardendale. Once she's locked in the tower, Ivy realizes that she cannot marry such an evil man, and she climbs out the lone window, nearly falling to her death. Luckily, she is rescued by Elridge, a small dragon who cannot breathe fire and is something of a chicken. The unlikely pair sets out to find Ivy's fairy godmother, Drusilla, fighting off trolls and swamp sprites in the process, hoping Drusilla can help them defeat Romil and save the kingdom. Ivy is an engaging alternative to the standard damsel-in-distress figure, and with a lushly vivid setting, witty dialogue, and lots of adventure, this well-plotted first novel will appeal to fans of Vivian Vande Velde's A Hidden Magic (1985) and A Well-Timed Enchantment (1990). Grades 5-8. --Melissa Moore
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 10 and up
  • Grade Level: 5 and up
  • Lexile Measure: 980L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Holiday House (May 15, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0823422615
  • ISBN-13: 978-0823422616
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 5.1 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,884,209 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Dawn Lairamore has always loved fairy tales but thinks you can only take so many sweet, proper princesses and ferocious, fire-breathing dragons. She thought it would be fun to write a fairy tale where the princess and the dragon weren't what you expected. She can't embroider or walk with a book balanced on her head, so much like her character Ivy, she would make a pretty terrible princess. Visit her online at www.dawnbooks.com, where you can read chapters from Ivy's Ever After and Ivy and the Meanstalk.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Whatcha Reading Now? on May 24, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Princess Ivy isn't your typical princess. She never wanted to learn to play the harp or embroider tapestries. Why, there were times she was positively unladylike!

In another time or place this might have worked in Ivy's favor, but the Kingdom of Arendale never produces any male heirs, so the Princess Ivy is key in attracting the next king. According to tradition, she will be imprisoned in a tower on her fourteenth and guarded from escape by a ferocious dragon. Many princes will travel to Arendale (which is unusual because the kingdom itself is no great shake) enticed by the sport of dragon slaying. The first to be successful in slaying the dragon will win the princess's hand in marriage, the dragon's treasure and the throne.

Well. This isn't really Ivy's idea of a good time, but she loves her father and understands how important this is to the future of the Arendale. Still, when she meets Eldrige, the timid and somewhat small dragon who will guard her, she wonders if they might have other options. This non-conformist duo become unlikely friends united to see if they can change Arendale's centuries-old tradition and take on an adventure that includes trolls, truly ferocious dragons and, of course, Ivy's fairy godmother.

The way the story is told is as untraditional as the characters. Readers will be lulled by a gentle authentic fairy tale rhythm, only to be hit with a funny contemporary phrase or dialogue. Debut author Dawn Lairamore has written a fun, fresh fairytale themed around friendship rather than capturing the heart of Prince Charming.
-- Reviewed by Michelle Delisle
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By M. Lee on April 2, 2011
Format: Hardcover
As a mother who screens everything her 11-year-old daughter reads, I had just put down (in relief) "The Wide-Awake Princess" when I came across "Ivy's Ever After" by Dawn Lairamore. Oh, no, not another fractured fairytale! And whose cover is a cross between Rick Riordan's "The Lost Hero" and Laurence Yep's "City of Fire", no less! But then, I started reading - and I found myself thoroughly enjoying Ivy's trials and tribulations as an unconventional princess stuck in a conventional (or is it?) fairytale setting. The writing is accessible and age-appropriate, with just the right hint of romance, and gave me a sense of Diana Wynne Jones, M. M. Kaye's "The Ordinary Princess" and Diane Zahler's "The Thirteenth Princess." The humour and twists in the book reminded me of "The Paper Bag Princess" by Robert N. Munsch. I spent a couple of very happy hours before handing it over to said daughter, saying the most annoying words a tweenager could hear from her all-knowing mother: "You will LOVE this book!" Happily, two days later, I was rewarded with the following review:

"Ivy's Ever After" by Dawn Lairamore is a great read, despite the fact that (or because of) this fairytale doesn't exactly follow the same rules as Cinderella, Rapunzel, or any of the other ones we are familiar with.

"Ivy has never been a proper princess. She can't embroider, play the harp or even curtsy properly. Perhaps this is because her mother is in heaven and her father is a bit mad, but in this fairytale, you can be glad Ivy is the princess of the land, especially when a haughty suitor of hers decides to rule her kingdom and murder her family (everyone living in her castle) after marrying her.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By fredtownward VINE VOICE on June 16, 2010
Format: Hardcover
is so dazzling you wonder how brightly she'll shine with more experience!

In our oh so clever post-modern world fairy tale parodies arguably outnumber the fairy tales, and from the description Ms. Lairamore's debut novel looked like Yet Another of the former,...

but it isn't.

Take the Dragon Treaty. Far from being merely a send up of the traditional "noble prince rescues useless princess from evil dragon" story, it is actually a cold, calculated, clever, and surprisingly merciful solution to a problem of dragon infestation, similar to but much deadlier than that shown at the beginning of How to Train Your Dragon, and a female royal heir not being considered capable of rule, as dealt with less logically and straightforwardly in Cayla Kluver's Legacy.

The upside of the tragedy surrounding Princess Ivy's (short for Ivory Isadora Imperia Irene) birth: the death of her mother the Queen, the disappearance of her fairy godmother, and the crumbling sanity of her father the King who never truly got over it, is the blessing of an unconventional upbringing, which enables her to avoid many of the stultifying traditions surrounding being raised solely for the purpose of waiting in a tower to be rescued by the prince who succeeds in slaying the assigned dragon and then producing the required (for some reason always female) royal heir(s).
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