Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
E-Arc with thanks to netgalley and Houghton Mifflin HarcourtPrincess Wisdom, known as Dizzy, longs for a life of adventure far beyond the staid old kingdom of Montagne. Tips, a soldier, longs to keep his true life secret from his family. Fortitude, an orphaned maid, longs only for Tips. These three passionate souls might just attain their dreams while preserving Montagne from certain destruction, if only they can tolerate each other long enough to come up with a plan. Tough to save the world when you can't even be in the same room together.
Wisdom is an unconventional princess – she would rather run through the fields and learn to swear at the local docks than focus on her upcoming nuptials. Her grandmother, Queen Benevolence despairs of her. Meanwhile, kitchen wench and orphan, Trudy is in love with her childhood friend Tips, who is training to be a soldier in the Emperor’s retinue. And when these characters all meet up, the course of nations will change.
Fun and witty – Wisdom’s Kiss is told from various points of view – some in retrospect, some via letters and diary entries and some through encyclopaedia entries. This is a different method of telling a story from other children’s books – and reminiscent of classic tale Dracula - and I really enjoyed getting a taste of the different characters involved and seeing how their story merged together. The writing is smooth and I found myself desperately flicking through wanting to know how each character would get their happy ever after – or even if they all would! The style might not be to everyone’s taste, but I appreciated the different method of storytelling.
A fairy tale gone awry, Wisdom’s Kiss is a fast paced, amusing tale of true love, magic and a suspiciously clever cat. It was a great distraction for a few train journeys, much like an ice lolly on a hot day – tasty, light and doesn’t last long enough. This is a very modern take on the fairy tale world where magic itself has fallen out of fashion and is considered more luck and fable than real. My one disappointment was Trudy herself – her role in events is peripheral at best and she seemed a little weak – never really taking charge of her own life. But this was a minor niggle in a book full of fun.
Recommended for fans of fairy tales and the Princess Bride. 7.5 out of 10.