I LOVE a good fairy tale so I was thrilled to see Sharon Creech's new book CASTLE CORONA. It is due out this fall and it is a must-have.
The story is one of a royal family and some peasants. The characters all fit into the mold of great fairy tale characters--the strong female peasant, the beautiful princess, etc.
This is the story of all of these characters--characters who want more from life and from who they are. The beautiful princess finds that she wants to be more than beautiful. Pia and Enzio, the peasants, want to live in royalty. The king wishes to be more wise. These aren't formal wishes--just the every day thinking of people wanting something different or more in a real-life kind of way.
It is a fun fairy tale--felt a bit like TALE OF DESPEREAUX and a bit like something by Gail Carson Levine--a great combination for a great fairy tale.
The thing I liked best is the message Creech seems to give us about story. In the book, there is a wordsmith who often tells stories to the royal family. It is through these stories that the royal family and the peasants begin to imagine the possibilities in their lives, see themselves in stories, and become more content.
The back of the book says that this is for ages 8-12. I can definitely see reading it aloud to 3rd graders. And I think it will also appeal to much older readers too. It is a great fairy tale. With so many fairy tales and fantasies coming out, I am so happy to see that Sharon Creech has added to the genre. I loved the story, the characters, the writing, and the message.