Just to make things clear... this is not a stand alone story. Well, I suppose you can read only this volume, but there's more titles in this series. (I know that, sometimes, we just want to read something that doesn't have an infinity of never ending stories ahead, so you're warned that this synopsis is a little misleading in that).
Then, yes... the cover acts a little as a deterrent for all of us who are well past our teen years (hands up in the air!)... but this was so funny and insane that I honestly couldn't care less about that!
You could look at this from this pov: This story could make an awesome bedtime story for the younger ones... if one could get them to go to sleep without knowing how this ends!
So, cute and insanely amusing story... check.
Likable characters, with a good message behind it: You don't have to be the prettiest one, or to have magical abilities to succeed in life... brains, yes, that is a very important aspect!
Annie our main character, is Sleeping Beauty's sister, and she doesn't have an easy life.
(I know, right? Princess?)
She's not as pretty as her sister and then her parents practically placed her aside regarding their own lives, because Annie is impervious to all types of magic, and as such, she cannot stand for too long beside their magical beauty enhanced family members, before the glamour starts to fade.
She's like....the nail polish remover, to their nail polish! ;)
The problem is that, apparently, the Queen is not very keen of age spots and things of the sort...
Now, were this the "normal" type of YA book, this would probably lead to a whole lot of angst and stupid decisions, (motorcrossing alongside a werewolf... and things like that) but Annie is not that type of young girl.
She may not be as pretty as her sister, but that doesn't mean that she cannot learn other types of activities.
As such, she decides to learn everything she can with the palace non royal members: _She can swim, she can shoot, she can defend herself, and she can use her brains.
This will be her greatest asset _and the Kingdom's _,when disaster happens, aka her sister, and consequently the entire palace _ falls asleep after Gwendolyn _Beauty_ stabs her finger in the obvious "spinning wheel plot".
Surrounded by sleeping people, in her parent's castle, Annie decides to take matters into her own hands.
If her sister needs her prince's *snorts* kiss to wake up (even if Annie thinks he's a schmuck!), then Annie will go and fetch Digby... no, I'm not kidding. The idiot's name is Digby!
And that's when the fun begins :)
The plot is great, it's an insane mash up of other fairy tales, not only Sleeping Beauty's.
Think Disney, Pixar movies... you know, things like Tangled and Shreck. That was what I felt while reading this story. Like I was watching an insane cartoon movie.
The only thing that normally is lost when seeing movies _ well, at least comparing them to the actual books _ is the character's depth. This may not be a movie, but being this kind of book, the emphasis was clearly placed on the plot, therefore my three star rating.
To finish this, let me just say that it was refreshing to read a character as level headed as Annie. Even when she began to fall in love she always kept her feet on the ground. She's a princess, and as such she knows where her priorities are.
Buy "The Wide Awake Princess"