I adore Shannon Hale and the kids are huge fans as well. I had not gotten around to PRINCESS ACADEMY until now. So many books and all that jazz. However, I thoroughly enjoyed listening to the Full Cast Audio recording of the story of Miri and her friends from Mt Eskel who are in training to perhaps become the newest princess. There is action and adventure and just enough magic. Hale manages to combine the ancient archetypes with an almost contemporary feel to the story. Certainly, there are plenty of contemporary themes present. The importance of family, perseverance in the face of incredible odds, the true nature of education and the cost of ignorance to name a few. Miri is spirited and seems to fly off the page (or the CD).
Now, I am blasting my way through an ARC and hope to complete the reading tonight and post tomorrow before teaching and then hauling back to Houston to teach another class on Monday. No rest for the wicked.