A Posse of Princesses by Sherwood Smith

Summary: Prince Lios invites all the eligible young ladies of the surrounding kingdoms to a ball. Princess Rhis has never left her kingdom before and is looking forward to dancing and meeting people her own age.  But the fun stops abruptly when the perfect princess Iardith, whom everyone has been fawning over, is kidnapped from the castle. It is up to Rhis and her new friends to go find and prevent an international war.

Review: A Posse of Princesses is a wonderfully fun read that will delight any fan of fantasy.  It has all the elements one could want, such as princesses who do not believe in being too proper and princes and other young gentlemen for them and the readers to fall in love with, but Smith is able to work with the conventions of fantasy without being trite.  The cast of princesses, for one thing, is far from one-dimensional. Rhis in many ways appears at first to be the “classic” heroine, a young pretty girl trained to be proper and not do things like listen to ballads, but the other people she meets teach her there is more than one way to be royal. Taniva is from a country where the women fight as well as the men and where it is a rite of passage to steal something from the rival kingdom. Yuzhyu is from an island nation and speaks a foreign language. Glaen’s family has an interest in shipping. The cast of characters is greatly varied and the greatest strength of the book. Readers will love them all because even the “villains” have some redeeming qualities that make them seem human.

Published: 2008

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