A Secret Princess by Margaret Stohl & Melissa de la Cruz {Stephanie’s Review}

Posted December 5th, 2022 by in *Review / 2 comments

A Secret Princess by Margaret Stohl & Melissa de la Cruz {Stephanie’s Review}A Secret Princess by Margaret Stohl, Melissa De La Cruz
Also by this author: Beautiful Creatures, Beautiful Darkness, Witches of East End, The Birthday Girl
Published by G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers
Genres: Historical, Young Adult
Pages: 390
Format: Hardcover
Read in: November 2022
Source: Personal Collection
Add to: Goodreads

Best friends Mary Lennox, Sara Crewe, and Cedric Erroll have each other, and they are the only reason boarding school isn’t completely insufferable.

Tragically, Mary’s father passes away after he’s stripped of his fortune, leaving her orphaned and with just one possession: a ticket to a ship that will bring her to the home of her last living relative, in America. But Cedric can’t bear to say goodbye, and reveals that he’s the son of an earl with endless riches . . . and a huge estate that the three of them can run away to, leaving the boarding school–and thoughts of America–behind.

That’s when Sara and Cedric discover that there’s more to them than friendship, and Mary begins spending time with a handsome local boy–a relationship that quickly blossoms into romance.

It turns out that Maythem Estate is more than just a getaway–it’s a secret garden of budding romance.

Filled with charm, romance, and swoon, and inspired by some of classic literature’s most beloved characters, The Secret Princess is the perfect blend of A Little Princess and The Secret Garden— and the perfect companion to Jo & Laurie. - via GoodReads

3 Stars

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.

Favorite Quotes

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.

Stephanie

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