Not too long ago I read Michael Mullin’s 8: The Previously Untold Story of the Previously Unknown 8th Dwarf and loved it, so I was excited to read his newest rhyming story, The Plight and Plot of Princess Penny, and you have to admit, it is the perfect P title. I liked the concept: Penny is truly a princess, but she was totally unpopular at school. A former friend, Darcy, is the queen of the class and is who Penny blames for everyone disliking and misjudging her. So she decides to get revenge and hires the witch in the woods, who she found through an advertisement, to give her a spell. Spells are tricky things though, as are witches, and of course not everything turns out the way Penny expects.

Two things I like:

  • The rhymes. It’s witty and fun.
  • The story’s self-awareness:

He scolded her for visiting the cottage. His
patience was wearing thin.
“Don’t you read,” he pleaded his case,”any stories
like the one you’re in?
You pay an old hag to give you lessons in the fine
art of being cruel,
So you can attack some misguided girl who also
attends your school?” (28%)

Two things I didn’t like:

  • The high school angst. Others might find the lessons in the story worthwhile and meaningful. We shouldn’t pick on people. High school is a tough place full of cliques, but to be honst I don’t care. I was looking for light fun, and this one just hadn’t too much real life for what I was expecting.
  • The witch. Well, I like her as herself, but I wasn’t fond of the witch Mullin chose to use. She was the one from The Frog Prince and Beauty and Beast. In The Frog Prince I don’t remember the witch having a big part and if I remember right it was an evil fairy who cursed the Beast.

It’s a quick read, but I might not have been the perfect audience. I was looking for something laugh-out-loud funny and irreverent like 8, and Princess Penny just didn’t live up to my expectations.

2½ out of 5 stars

Category: Young Adult- Fantasy

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Published February 2, 2012
30 pages

Book source: For review

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