Author: E.D. Baker
Published: Bloomsbury, 2010
Cover Score: B (gotta say, I like this one a lot more)
Overall Grade: B+
Compared to her older sister Princess Gwendolyn, Annie is rather...well, ordinary. She has no special magical gifts and isn't considered beautiful. However, when Gwendolyn pricks her finger on a spinning wheel and sends the whole castle into a deep sleep for a hundred years, Annie's resistance to magic keeps her awake. In order to protect the kingdom and save her sister, Annie and her guard Liam set out on a journey to find the prince to kiss Gwendolyn awake. But who is Gwendolyn's true love? And will Annie ever find one of her own, too?
My thoughts: Cute, cute, cute! I love fairytale retellings--especially creative, clever, and funny ones, like Ms. Baker's previous The Frog Princess series, so I was excited to hear that she had put a new twist on the classic Sleeping Beauty.
The Wide-Awake Princess was full of charm, humor, and adventure, reading like Gail Carson Levine's Ella Enchanted. I loved the journey described in the book: it was full of adventure and twists and turns, keeping me at the edge of my seat to see what was coming next for Annie and her motley crew of princes. She was the ideal main character: funny, relatable, and oh-so-average. I loved how witty she was, always having a clever response on the tip of her tongue when she was in a sticky situation.
The world Ms. Baker created was perfectly imaginable, and the helpful details helped bring the story to life.
Even though the book tended to drag in places and was quite predictable, middle grade girls will adore Ms. Baker's latest, and, like me, will want more of Annie!