BOOK 1: Princess Academy by Shannon Hale
Palace of Stone description:
Coming down from the mountain to a new life in the city is a thrill to Miri. She and her princess academy friends have come to Asland to help the future princess Britta prepare for her wedding. There, Miri also has a chance to attend school – at the prestigious Queen’s Castle.
But as Miri befriends sophisticated and exciting students, she also learns that they have some frightening plans for a revolution. Torn between loyalty to the princess and her new friends’ ideas, between an old love and a new crush, and between her small mountain home and the bustling city, Miri looks to find her own way in this new place.
While reading this my husband asked me why am I reading a book meant for children, and the fact is that sometimes books like these get easily dismissed because they’re sweet and simple and tend to have a happily ever after at the end. Personally, I like reading books like these at times because of such, but more so the problems being dealt with aren’t some childish issues. The struggle of being strong enough to stand up for what is right in the face of certain death, but also being unsure of what exactly is right and what is wrong when dealing with ideas of how to bring about change isn’t something just for kids. Books like this one are wonderful because they don’t try and overload the plot with murder and mayhem which allows one to really contemplate the ideas being brought across, and perhaps gives you something to consider in your own life. Miri is right in the midst of a revolution that can become deadly violent with the slightest spark, and the weight of trying to figure out what side she should be on and what is not only right for her home in the mountains but all of the people of Danland is no silly plot. Hale once more writes a book fitting for young readers, but worthy of an adults attention.