edh's Reviews > The Secret Life of Prince Charming

The Secret Life of Prince Charming by Deb Caletti
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Jan 31, 09

Read in January, 2009

I know a lot of people are going to claim that this is a guy-bashing book, but I found it to be a lovely exploration of love and emotion. Quinn is turning 17 and, along with sister Sprout, has a tenuous relationship with her biological father. They've only been in each other's lives for a few years and the girls are fond of his newest girlfriend, Brie. Unfortunately, one day they show up for a visit and Brie has vanished - but a precious keepsake of hers was left behind. Quinn discovers that her father has a sort of trophy collection of objects from all the women he's loved and driven away, and together with half-sister Frances Lee the daughters set off on a crazy quest to return the objects to their rightful owners. The symbolism could have been heavy-handed, but isn't - both metaphorically and literally, their father has been manipulative in his relationships. Each woman has been robbed of an important sense of self as well as a physical object. Thankfully, men are not totally demonized and we do see some healthy examples of male-female interactions - and the story ends on a hopeful note for the future. Caletti leaves the reader with a strong sense of optimism that Quinn is not destined to live under the cloud of her father's failed relationships, and that integrity is the most important ingredient of love itself.
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