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The Princess and the Snowbird Hardcover – Bargain Price, May 4, 2010

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 5-9 Two very different young people cross paths and their lives are changed forever in this fantasy seemingly set during the Middle Ages. Liva has aur-magic, which enables her to change into any animal she wishes. She lives in a cave with her loving mother and father, a hound and a bear. Jens, on the other hand, has no magic. He lives in a village with a cruel and abusive father. Liva and Jens both share a love for animals, compassion for all living things, and genuine selflessness. They are drawn together by this commonality and by a common enemy. The Hunter believes that aur-magic lowers humans to the level of animals and wants to destroy all those who possess it. As events unfold, readers learn that both Liva and Jens have an even greater reason to pursue and stop the Hunter. The author skillfully combines adventure, magic, and romance, and her exquisite use of words draws readers into the story. Lana Miles, Jackson Elementary School, Rosenberg, TX
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Pulling themes and even characters from The Princess and the Hound (2007) and The Princess and the Bear (2009), Harrison offers another satisfying, stand-alone fantasy, framed in folklore, that explores archetypal divisions between good and evil, life and death, and human and animal. Liva, the daughter of a hound and a bear, possesses strong, nurturing magic, including the ability to shape-shift into animal form. Young human Jens has no magical talent, but the characters' potent attraction draws them into an epic quest to save humans from themselves. Once again, a strong female protagonist, romance, magical adventure, and provocative questions will capture teens. Grades 6-9. --Gillian Engberg

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: HarperTeen; 1 edition (May 4, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061553174
  • ASIN: B004F9OUZI
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 6.3 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,835,246 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Mette Ivie Harrison grew up in a two-hundred-year-old farmhouse in central New Jersey in a family with eleven children, a dog, a pony, and lots of chickens. She moved to the more suburban Utah city of Provo at age ten, where her father taught Computer Science at Brigham Young University.

In 1985, when she was in high school, she spent a year abroad at a German Gymnasium. She took numerous AP classes when she returned to Utah, and in 1988, was named one of twelve female "Ezra Taft Benson Scholars," the highest award offered by the Mormon-owned Brigham Young University, given not only for academic scholarship, but for service and dedication to the Mormon church. Because of AP credit, German language experience, and her tendency to take heavy credit loads, Mette was able to graduate from Brigham Young University with a Master's Degree in German Literature only two years later, in 1990, when she was nineteen. During her two years, Mette was a writer and editor for The Student Review, the subversive student newspaper not approved by the university. She also had experiences with several of the "September Six," the notorious feminist scholars who were excommunicated in 1992.

Mette married high school sweetheart Matthew Harrison in December of 1990, following his mission for the Mormon church to Haiti. She went on to earn a PhD from Princeton University in 1995 in Germanic Languages and Literatures with a dissertation on the female Bildungsroman of the 18th century. She faced considerable difficulty on the topic because of prejudice against a dissertation that focused completely on women writers in a department without a single female tenured faculty member.

Beginning in 1994, Mette worked as an adjunct professor at BYU, but decided in 1997 to work on her fiction writing career. Two years later, in 1999, she sold her first young adult novel, The Monster in Me, about a young teen girl who is fostered by a Mormon family in Heber, Utah. Mette has since published seven young adult novels, including Mira, Mirror and The Princess and the Hound. She has also published Ironmom, a memoir about the loss of her sixth child in 2005, and the subsequent training for an Ironman competition, which brought her some semblance of sanity after years of depression.

Since 2006, Mette has completed four full Ironman competitions, more than one hundred total races, and is ranked #144 for her age group nationally in triathlon. She also trains her husband, Matt, and her children. All but the youngest have competed in at least half-marathon distance races, swim well, and volunteer at local races. Two have completed marathons, two have completed Olympic distance triathlons, and one just finished his first half Ironman (beating his father for the first time) in training for his first full Ironman. Mette trains an average of three hours a day and her PR for a half-Ironman (1.2 mile swim, 56 mile bike, 13.1 mile run) is now at 5:16.

Mette delivered three of her five children at home. Her first son was delivered in a hospital after an emergency transfer. In 2002, Mette was part of one of the first Orson Scott Card "Literary Boot Camps." She gave birth to her fifth child, Zachary, on Thursday of the Boot Camp, after spending Wednesday writing her story between contractions. Friday morning, she was back at the Boot Camp with baby in tow. This made her rather memorable to everyone there.

An active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Mette has served as Gospel Doctrine teacher, as a member of the Primary Presidency, as an aid for an autistic child, as a Primary instructor, and as a leader for the 8-11-year-old girls. Currently, Mette works in her ward nursery and her husband serves with the scouts. Mette's five children, now ages eleven to twenty, are a dynamic group with a wide range of talents and attitudes toward faith.

You can find Mette on the web at She is on Twitter at @metteharrison and has a Tumblr, She also posts on Youtube with her "Ugly Ironman" vlogs. Depression, health and fitness, and questions about doctrines of the Mormon church regarding family and women are frequent topics of essays and blogs.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Chocolette on June 28, 2010
Format: Hardcover
"The Princess and the Snowbird" addresses the final solution to the problem of the people's aversion to animal magic from the first two books in the trilogy. Here, we are introduced to Liva, daughter of the hound and the bear, who have dedicated their lives to helping those with animal magic. In their hopes to truly make a difference, the two give up their magic and give it all to Liva, who, with their combined magic, is able to shift to any animal she desires.

The story sets forward, showing the reader how the sheltered Liva, who had only lived in the forest, comes to understand human nature and its cruelty to those who are different, and also discover hope - that not all men are evil.

Much shorter than the other two books, and slightly different, with two types of magic identified, it takes a slight shift in perspective. Harrison writes in her bookflap, "The trick to making a reader believe that two characters will fall in love with each other is to make the reader fall in love with both characters". While she dispenses good advice, I think the books works because of her voice, rather than my love for her characters.

Harrison's voice is quite mesmerizing - dragging you into the story, even if the premise is quite outlandish.

Definitely would recommending reading the first two books to understand what is going on in this story and to get the full conclusion.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Christina (A Reader of Fictions) on December 12, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Even though I have read and enjoyed the previous books, I still found the marriage of the hound and the bear a bit...odd and unsettling. Still, they made better parents than any of the others in the book. Plus, Live got some super sweet powers out of the deal: she can turn into any animal. I so wish I could do that; it would be my childhood dreams come true!

This fantasy novel, much like de Lint's The Painted Boy, is much more about Liva's internal battles than her battle with evil. The final conflict concludes swiftly and anticlimactically, leaving another two chapters in a short book. The focus is on her coming to terms with her humanity. In some sense, the ending reminds me of Kristin Cashore's Graceling, of how dark it is and how everything isn't perfect.

As a consequence of that, the most interesting aspects of the novel were the philosophical. Mette Ivie Harrison's fantasy world clearly reflects the way humans destroy nature, poisoning it and taming it to meet human needs. Her world definitely appeals to me, with the animal languages and the different kinds of magic. What I love about this, although it's a bit preachy, is the message that humans are no better than animals. It has always been a major pet peeve that we humans consider ourselves better than our animal counterparts. So many people claim that we are different from animals, that we aren't animals. Except for the part where we totally are. So, Mette Ivie Harrison, you rock for sharing my (totally correct) opinion. Also, I met her at ALA very briefly and she's a really sweet woman!

I recommend this book to those who enjoyed the previous books in the series. Although this one is not quite as good, it is a short read and thought-provoking. I would not suggest beginning here if you have not read any of the other books, since I think aspects of it would be confusing and off-putting.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Deborah J. Andreasen on March 8, 2011
Format: Hardcover
She is endowed with aur-magic beyond anything anyone has seen before.

He has no magic, and is shunned by his village because of it.

Liva is the daughter of the Hound and the Bear who spent their long lives protecting animal magic and those who hold it. Jens has lived his life being beaten, ignored and persecuted because of his lack of magic. They seem the most unlikely of pairs, but theirs is a love that transcends magic.

Liva must live up to her heritage to protect and save magic, and Jens, who is immune to it, is the only person who can help her. Together, they must track down and stop the Hunter from mutilating and killing other humans with aur-magic.

This is the third installment in Mette Ivie Harrison's Princess trilogy - I don't know the official name. The love story in this was probably my favorite because it came so early on in the book and was not really a surprise to the characters. But as far as story content, I think it was a little lacking from the other books. It was still a beautiful book, and it wasn't as long as the others. That works both for and against it.

Definitely worth reading though.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Dolphinlady on February 2, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I enjoyed reading The Princess and the Snowbird. The book was alittle short for my liking but the story was a good one. I will look forward to buying more books from Harrison.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I'm a huge fan of Mette's books and loved seeing this book's perspective from the daughter of two characters I have loved and see what she turns into. It's definitely a dark book, with the abusive way of not belonging so evident in Jens past. I really love the world and the plot of these books and this last one did not disappoint. The reader gets a fuller glimpse into the world around these interesting characters who can change their form and contain magic.

The bad guy in this book was horrific and one that I won't soon be forgetting. I think it takes a really well made bad guy to turn the story into something darker and this one definitely does such. Mette writes so beautifully and really engrosses you in a world so magical that it comes alive in the reader's mind. I can't wait to read her latest novel, Tris & Izzie.
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