Wednesday, March 09, 2005

The Goose Girl

The Goose Girl by Sharon Hale, 2003

When Crown Princess Anidori-Kiladra Talianna Isilee was born, she did not open her eyes for 3 days. Her loving and understanding aunt cares for the girl and recognizes that this child is very special. She teaches her to listen to the voices of animals and nature. Growing up, Ani knows she is different as she has an ability to “speak” to animals including her beloved horse, Falada. Though she tries to fit in, she is viewed with suspicion by her mother so when her dear father dies, the queen revokes her title of Crown Princess and sends her off to marry the prince of a neighboring country.

On the journey to her new home, Ani is betrayed by her lady-in-waiting who attempts to have her killed and steals her identity. Fearing for her life, Ani hides in plain site. She works as the goose girl to the king, the man who would have been her father-in-law. In her new role she makes real friends and finds her true self.

Ani is a strong heroine and this is a very satisfying retelling of a lesser known fairy tale. Highly recommended.

Bloomsbury has an interesting Q&A with Hale. Not surprising, one of her favorite authors is Robin McKinley.


Anonymous said...

I remember reading your review and thinking, "If Sherry liked it..." I am trying to work throught the TX Lonestar list. That list has the best books...

Anonymous said...

This was the most amazing book I have ever read! I lent it to both my father and grandmother who set it was great! Ani comes off as a genuine character, someone you can relate to. I love how it isn't just a straight fairy tale and that it has twists and turns in it. It is meant for a younger audience but is almost like that fairy tale that we want to be a part of.