A Secret Princess by Margaret Stohl & Melissa de la Cruz was a Once Upon a Book Club pick (I can’t remember which month). Unfortunately this book started out incredibly slow for me. I loved the concept of blending The Secret Garden and A Little Princess into one storyline. These two movies were among my favorites as a child. I think I struggled at first with mixing the two together and fought in my mind to keep them separate.
The characters were fantastic. The appearance of some of the side characters in the story made me smile. I also really enjoyed the writing after I adapted to the story. It took me a few weeks to read and I think that’s because at the time we had Bear and Ziggy (my MILs dogs), I was in some intense classes with school, and my grandfather was passing. I think that this book just found me at the wrong time in life.
I did find one thing unforgivable and it docked the book a whole star. There was a storyline that definitely needed to be wrapped up and I felt like Stohl and de la Cruz had written themselves into a corner with it. There was really only one way to resolve it but that doesn’t mean I liked it. In fact, I hated it. It was tucked away in the epilogue of the book and it seemed to me like it was treated with very little significance. Endings are very important to me. It can really effect my enjoyment of the book in its entirety. I really disliked this ending and it shows in my rating. Prior to that I would say A Secret Princess had been a solid four stars.
There is a strange belief among us humans that we are responsible for the cruelty of others.
Allow others to treat you as if you are nothing, Miss Crewe, then you will be nothing. No amount of respectfulness or politeness or gratitude or decorum will change that.
When things change so quickly, even when they are terrible things, it is easy to focus on the most immediate, the most personal. I imagine it is like swimming in calm waters in one moment, then fighting the tide the next. In both cases, your only goal is survival.
His eyes were unfocused, lost somewhere in the time and space between the world that exists around you and the world that exists in your own head.
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