Book: Dealing with Dragons (1990)
Author: Patricia C. Wrede
Genre: MG, Fantasy
Rating: 4 Stars
Basic plot: Princess Cimorene hates the idea of being a princess. She never gets to cook or fence or learn magic. So she runs away and ends up in the clutches of the dragon, Kazul. But they soon become friends. And even when the knights and princes come to rescue her, she plots ways to stall them. However, when the wizards show up, well, that’s just asking for trouble…
1) The tone of this book is what makes this worth reading! I absolutely loved all the references to fairy tales. It’s so meta. For example:
“Then they gave me a loaf of bread and told me to walk through the forest and give some to anyone who asked. I did exactly what they told me, and the second beggar-woman was a fairy in disguise, but instead of saying that whenever I spoke, diamonds and roses would drop from my mouth, she said that since I was so kind, I would never have any problems with my teeth.”
“Really? Did it work?”
“Well, I haven’t had a toothache since I met her.”
“I’d much rather have good teeth than have diamonds and roses drop out of my mouth whenever I said something”
– Dealing with Dragons
2) I liked the spunky Princess Cimorene. And the (almost motherly) dragon Kazul. They make a great team! I loved all Cimorene’s plots for getting rid of the princes.
3) I particularly enjoyed the short little chapter descriptions before each chapter. They give us just enough information, but not too much to ruin the story.
4) The Stone Prince was quite entertaining. I love how he bumbles into the plot and changes everything.
5) The end section is great. (Slight SPOILER: once the dragons are trying to find a new king — End Spoiler.) I loved how everything comes together at this point in the story for Cimorene and Kazul.
WHAT’S NOT COOL…
1) The book started out great, but somewhere in the middle, I hit a bit of a slow stretch. It did take a bit of time to get through it. (Picks up at the end again, though.)
My rating is 4 Stars (out of 5) – A fun fantasy. I would recommend it for anybody who like dragon stories or fairy tales with a twist.
Have you read this book? What are your thoughts? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments!
Note: I’m posting this for Greg Pattridge’s Marvelous Middle-Grade Monday…