Lisa Vegan's Reviews > Princess Academy

Princess Academy by Shannon Hale
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I found this to be a very pleasant story. I’m not exactly sure why some people hate it and a lot of people unreservedly adore it but I did enjoy it, a lot.

I loved the little poems at the start of each chapter; they gave such a good feel for this mountain community and its people. I was completely charmed by this culture and its people.

There is a very inspiring main protagonist and most of the characters were interesting. I really liked Miri (the main character) and her spunk and her ingenuity, especially regarding how she was motivated to use her educational opportunities and how she figured out how to communicate with her fellow students and villagers.

I think this tale says a lot about feeling like an outsider vs. feeling a sense of belonging, and also about what is important in life.

I didn’t really like a particular reveal toward the end because it seemed just a bit like cheating to me, but by the end I guess the way the plot evolved made sense to me and the story from beginning to end felt very satisfying.

I’d say that readers can enjoy this book from ages 9 or 10 and all the way up. I have this under speculative fiction and there is a fantasy element, but it’s so subtle that this could almost be considered general fiction or a kind of realistic full length fairy tale (what with the prince and princesses and an unique way of communicating available to the mountain people.)
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Reading Progress

01/17/2010 page 1
01/19/2010 page 123
39.17% "Finally started this last night & read some today. I'm really enjoying it."
01/21/2010 page 259
82.48% "very enjoyable story"

Comments (showing 1-14 of 14) (14 new)

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message 1: by Kathryn (new) - added it

Kathryn Are you still reading this? Is it your first Hale or are you already a fan? I have this and meant to read it this month with a YA GoodReads group but I was so uninspired by Hale's "Goose Girl" that I'm not sure I'll get to it... I want to try it, someday...

Lisa Vegan I haven't started!!! I have it out from the library. It's the January selection for my Young Adult Books club here at Goodreads. Oy vey!!! I don't know if I'll ever get to it; it might go back on my to-read shelf. I've been reading the same book (for pure pleasure, not any book groups) for over 2 weeks - it's due in 6 days - I'm only about 2/3 the way through it. I love it but I'm reading so slowly/infrequently. Not helping that I'm reading so many picture books, I guess. I have some time to read today and tomorrow so maybe I can finish Shades of Grey: The Road to High Saffron. But then, I have 4 January book group books to read and I know I can't get to them all.

Lisa Vegan Kathryn, Oh, This is my first of her books. I've heard positive things about it. We shall see.

message 4: by Kathryn (new) - added it

Kathryn I've heard great things about her books, too. Maybe "Goose Girl" just wasn't the right match for me. I know PA got lots of critical acclaim, too.

By the way, I'm guessing we must both be in the same YA group here ;-)

Lisa Vegan I guess so. Are you going to read this book?

message 6: by Kathryn (new) - added it

Kathryn Chances are I won't get to it this month (I've become enamored with Julia Child's "My Life in France"--I finally got my turn in the library holds and have to hurry to finish it!) but I bought it for $1.00 at a library sale and I HAVE been curious about it so i hope to someday.

Lisa Vegan Chandra, Good point. I was feeling busy and overwhelmed and almost skipped reading it but it was the mixed ratings that decided me. I'm really glad I enjoyed it. It's a very fast read and light & fun.

I'm now reading a novel less light & "fun" but I am loving it so far.

message 8: by Kathryn (new) - added it

Kathryn Good to read your review, Lisa, and know that you enjoyed this book. Since I already got my $1 copy from the library sale, I'll probably give this one a go as my second Hale book and see if I become more of a fan.

Lisa Vegan Kathryn, I will be very interested in what you think, and why. I do hope you enjoy it, just because it's disappointing to spend any time reading something you end up disliking.

message 10: by Kathryn (new) - added it

Kathryn Thanks, Lisa! I will let you know. If I don't get into something after the first several chapters, I usually just put it down, anyway.

message 11: by Lisa (new) - rated it 4 stars

Lisa Vegan Abigail, It was a really fast read, even for me. I'm not sure if you'd like it or not. I think you would but I did read something in another reader's review that makes me think you might not like something about the end - something I didn't first like but then changed my mind and dis like.

Ronyell Lisa, I loved your review and I just recently read this book and I loved it!!! Check out my review!!!

message 13: by Lisa (new) - rated it 4 stars

Lisa Vegan Ronyell wrote: "Lisa, I loved your review and I just recently read this book and I loved it!!! Check out my review!!!"'

Okay, Ronyell...tomorrow I think... Yes, Iiked this one a lot more than many others.

Ronyell Yeah, at first I thought this book was going to be boring, but when I read through it, it was really interesting and unique from all the over fairy tale books I have read.

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