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Princess of the Wild Swans Hardcover – January 31, 2012
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“Fans of Jessica Day George and Gail Carson Levine will enjoy Zahler’s light, lyrical prose, as well as her stalwart and true heroine and strong secondary characters, all of which make this fairly straightforward retelling of Grimm’s “The Six Swans” fun to read.” (Booklist)
“As with her other fairy-tale interpretations, Zahler shines in her ability to set an exquisite scene.” (Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books)
“Engaging and entertaining. A pleasant magical outing.” (Kirkus Reviews)
A suspenseful climax leads to a happy conclusion. Fans of Gail Carson Levine’s “Princess Tales” series who are ready for something longer and more novelistic will love this tale (School Library Journal)
From the Back Cover
Princess Meriel’s brothers have been cursed. A terrible enchantment—cast by their conniving new stepmother—has transformed the handsome princes into swans. They now swim forlornly on a beautiful heart-shaped lake that lies just beyond the castle walls.
Meriel will do whatever it takes to rescue her beloved brothers. But she must act quickly. If Heart Lake freezes, her brothers will be forced to fly south or perish.
With help from her newfound friends Riona and Liam—a pretty half-witch and her clever brother—Meriel vows to finish a seemingly impossible task. If she completes it, her brothers may be saved.
But if she fails . . . all will be lost.
Top customer reviews
On my fairy tale journey, I met many fun characters including the wicked queen, Orianna. At one point, she wore a ruby ring. That's the only time I wanted to get close to her. How big was the ruby? I especially loved the governess, Mistress Tuileach. She's so kind to Princess Meriel who can not speak. She sends her thoughts to you. There comes a time when the old, cruel Queen will separate the two from one another.
Along the way, I have fallen in love with swans. Also, a guy named Liam who loved birds and other animals. He can heal animals. There are long talks with Ginger tea and scones. I have discovered Leek soup. I have run from fire, fallen in icy water and discovered verse again.
"'I will find out where she has gone,
And kiss her lips and take her hands;
And walk among long dappled grass,
And pluck till time and times are done
The silver apples of the moon,
The golden apples of the sun.'"
I've begun to wonder about shapeshifters. For example, Sadhbh. Her story is about love. She is turned from a deer to a woman. Her love travels to Afghanistan. I have begun to think again that life is magical, wondrous and adventurous. I've thought about a merrow and all the rest. I have a new neighborhood of friends. Oh, I'm naming my next cat "Catkin."
Princess Meriel is a fabulously written, strong young female heroine who will everything she can to save her father the King, her brothers and their kingdom from the evil Queen. I loved the transformation she has through out the story. She starts off being a little spoiled, and very stubborn (which I also admired about her) and becomes a fearlessness, courageous Princess who will stop at nothing to help her family. I also admired the fact that she felt she had the right to do whatever her brothers were doing. It's that feistiness that helps Meriel accomplish a nearly impossible task to save her brothers.
Aside from Meriel, I really loved the characters in this story. Liam and Riona, the brother and sister duo who aid Meriel in her quest to save her brothers and break the evil Queen's spell were two of my favorites. I found them to be just as strong as Meriel. I also enjoyed getting to know Mistress Tuileach. I thoroughly enjoyed Diane's exciting story line which is full of surprising twists and turns that kept me guessing what was going to happen next. This is a fabulous read for middle grade readers and for fans of MG books. If you're a fan of fairy tale re-tellings I highly recommend picking up this charming read.
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