by Sarah Henning
“She was the daughter of the Warrior King and the Runaway Queen, and she had made her choice. These people were poised to steal her crown, her independence, as they had stolen her father and Luca.
And that was their mistake. She was going to prove to them that they couldn’t steal from her. Not again. She was strong enough to take what was hers – her love, her throne, her future.”
Ratings & Reviews
Book Grade: A
The Princess Will Save You is a clever, contemporary version of the beloved Princess Bride story with enough twists and turns to keep readers satisfied. Amarande is smart and strong – not afraid to act on her instinct and follow her heart. The princess is principled and determined, absolutely unwilling to wed just to ascend the throne or save her kingdom. She believes in doing what is right – whether it be getting justice for her father or rescuing her kidnapped love.
I so appreciated the original take on an old favorite; the role reversal of the classic Princess Bride tale loosely follows the cult classic story, but is entirely unique. This is no ordinary rescue mission – there are plenty of twists and turns. Characters who seemed dead set on hurting the princess have a change of heart, and characters who should be trusted swiftly betray her. Amarande is feisty and fierce, but determined to do what her heart knows is right. As the journey continues, secrets slip out, and just when you think you know how this will end, there is a huge plot twist. Yes, there is a sequel in the making, but this book is worth reading now because it is beautifully written and wholly entertaining.
Movie Rating: PG
The Princess Will Save You plays out like a Disney movie – Amarande and Luca are sweetly attracted to each other, but with only a chaste kiss, there is little sauciness. There are some intense battles and there is reference to a few characters being attacked or killed, but readers are spared the details and gore. The most intense description is from a snake bite – the way that it impacts the flesh is thoroughly detailed, although a wound from a poisonous concoction is a close second. There are multiple villains – including maniacal Taillefer who concocts potions and tests them on people sent to his dungeon – but by and large, the threats presented are political in nature, not involving bloodshed.
Would I Buy This for My Library: Yes
For fans of YA romance, fantasy, adventure fiction, or fairy tales, The Princess Will Save You is a true treat. It is cleverly written, and the cover is intriguing, but the story picks up right away, hooking readers from the first. It is a thoughtfully written story and because it will appeal to a large audience, I am so excited to have this on my library shelves. Sarah Henning has masterfully crafted a new version of a beloved favorite and this new take is worth purchasing!
Amarande is a princess with a pretty great life – she loves her father, spends time with her best friend, the stable boy, and trusts that all is right in the kingdom. Everything changes, though, when her father – on a goodwill mission throughout the land – dies suddenly and leaves the throne vacant. Amarande may ascend the throne, but only on one condition – she gets married. Amarande makes it clear to everyone that when she does wed, she will do so for love.
She believes that she is on her way to reforming the kingdom and ready to solve the mysterious death of her father, but then she is approached by Prince Renard, next on the throne for a rival kingdom. He demands that the princess wed him before both of them lose their kingdoms. After flatly rejecting him, she realizes that Luca has been kidnapped and immediately sets off to find him. Knowing that Renard will relentlessly track her (and that her life is in danger from other rulers who would like to marry her and expand their kingdom), she works hard to find Luca and return home before all is lost. Pirates, a roving caravan, poisonous snakes, and vast desert landscapes, and many other threats make the princesses journey to find her true love a bit more complicated than she bargained for.
Book Talk Questions:
- Why does Amarande have suspicions about her father’s death? What supports her assumptions that others could benefit from her father’s absence?
- What does Renard propose to Amarande? How does he suggest this would benefit them both?
- Describe Luca’s kidnapping and the kidnappers who have him. Where are they going?
- How is Luca injured when Amarande tries to rescue him? Who is able to help?
- What does Renard have planned for Amarande when they return to the castle? Who warns her that life in the palace is not what it seems?
- What happens to Luca in the palace? Who helps him?
- Who shows up at Amarande’s palace? What is their secret?
A Perfect Read for Fans Of…
- The Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson
- Sea Witch by Sarah Henning
- The Shadow Queen by C.J. Redwine
Bonus: Student Review
“This book has a very strong female protagonist, Amarande, who is not afraid to go after want she wants. This book is perfect for middle school to early high school students. The book claims to be roughly based on The Princess Bride, [and] Amarande seems to resemble Westley a little, but Luca and the [rest of the] plot look nothing close to the movie. Overall, the book is an enjoyable adventure read with a good ‘moral of the story’ and unexpected plot twists.” – Natalie (Grade 12)