The Princess and the Goblin (Princess Irene and Curdie #1)
Young Princess Irene's belief in her great-grandmother's powers becomes essential as she and the miner Curdie work to foil the sinister Goblin plot against the king and his palace.
As always with George MacDonald, everything here is more than meets the eye: this in fact is MacDonald's grace-filled vision of the world. Said to be one of J.R.R. Tolkien's childhood favorites,
I had forgotten other appealing aspects: the humor, and the excitingly challenging vocabulary words. And, perhaps most appealing, is a part of the story seldom mentioned in the descriptions here - Princess Irene's amazing courage. At age e ...more
Also, a book I read for my Children's Literature class!
I thought this book was good, but definitely not my favorite. I didn't really like MacDonald's writing style, especially when he broke the 4th wall and kept refusing to describe things while also describing them (like "I COULD tell you what this looked like, but I really can't."?????). He sorta got on my nerves. Another thing that I didn't really like was that MacDonald didn't explain everything! Like, for instance, what ...more
The story is a fairytale, in the same order as Jack and the Beanstalk and The Goose Girl. There is a princess, a peasant boy, a castle and, of course, goblins ...more
"THERE was once a little princess who—
"But Mr. Author, why do you always write about princesses?"
"Because every little girl is a princess."
"You will make them vain if you tell them that."
"Not if they understand what I mean."
"Then what do you mean?"
"What do you mean by a princess?"
"The daughter of a king."
"Very well, then every little girl is a princess, and there would be no need to say anything about it ...more
It took me finding this LibriVox recording from one of my favorite narrators who has lamentably few books recorded, Andy Minter. He is simply superb. I get that delicious feeling of bei ...more
All of the greatest fantasy novels depict the great trials that humans must go through in life. Though there may be magic in the tale, it does not make the going easy. My fairy tale mindedness sometimes wonders why with the zap of a wand all cannot be made well, but deep inside me ...more
Eight-year-old princess Irene ...more
On one rainy day, Princess Irene wanders in the house, gets lost, finds a woman spinning in the tower, unbeknownst to anyone inside -- her great-great-grandmother Irene. On the first clear day after that storm, she goes walking with her nurse-- too far -- and can not return before nightfall, when the goblins start to menace them. Fortunately, they meet ...more
"The Princess and the Goblin" is a charmingly simple fairy tale--which is to say, it is superficially uncomplicated but full of imagery and themes ripe for symbolic or metaphorical interpretation. (Some of the language and themes may sound a bit trite to modern ears, but that might say more about modern ears than it does about the language and themes.) George MacDonald's work influenced ...more
Downloaded from Project Gutenberg.
Princess Irene lives on the side of a beautiful mountain that harbors a dark secret in terms of a goblin kingdom, whose rulers are pursuing a nefarious purpose--nothing less than kidnapping the princess. She and her nurse are rescued from one nearly tragic ve ...more
There's no real plot until about three-quarters of the way through. There are unrelated events. Some are interesting, some are mysterious and develop mild suspense for that reason, but there's no force driving any character, no goals in sight, and no serious threat to any character. Characters are dull. Good characters are treacly, evil or foolish characters are evil or foolish without being interesting.
The end is ...more
I listened to a particular ...more
Apart from that I found it quite enjoyable.
It's the first George MacDonald I've read. It was also one of the first books in English I bought ever so many years ago - not surprisingly, I found it too hard to read at the time. And I'm still surprised at the level of English that Victorian children could apparent ...more
Right away though I noticed that there were of course some key differenc ...more
It's a good moral tale, but everyone is too perfect in it. You root a little for the goblins, and mostly for Curdie as he is the most human, but there's too much obedience to authority and chiding people for not. In one scene, Curdie is taken to the room of I ...more
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Known particularly for his poignant fairy tales and fantasy novels, George MacDonald inspired many authors, such as W. H. Auden, J. R. R. Tolkien, C. S. Lewis, and Madeleine L'Engle. It was C.S. Lewis that wrote that he regarded MacDonald as his "master": "Picking up a copy of Phantastes one day at a train-station bookstall, I be ...more
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What is that, grandmother?'
To understand other people.'
Yes, grandmother. I must be fair - for if I'm not fair to other people, I'm not worth being understood myself. I see.”