Sunday, October 19, 2014

My Review of The Princess Spy

Here's a description of the book from Zondervan:

Margaretha has always been a romantic, and hopes her newest suitor, Lord Claybrook, is destined to be her one true love. But then an injured man is brought to Hagenheim Castle, claiming to be an English lord who was attacked by Claybrook and left for dead. And only Margaretha—one of the few who speaks his language—understands the wild story.

Margaretha finds herself unable to pass Colin’s message along to her father, the duke, and convinces herself “Lord Colin” is just an addled stranger. Then Colin retrieves an heirloom she lost in a well, and asks her to spy on Claybrook as repayment. Margaretha knows she could never be a spy—not only is she unable to keep anything secret, she’s sure Colin is completely wrong about her potential betrothed. Though when Margaretha overhears Claybrook one day, she discovers her romantic notions may have been clouding her judgment about not only Colin but Claybrook as well. It is up to her to save her father and Hagenheim itself from Claybrook’s wicked plot.

My Rating


My Review

I'm always thrilled at the release of a new Melanie Dickerson novel. Her romances are sweet and full of adventure, uniquely appealing with their blend of historical setting and fairy-tale elements. The Princess Spy is another lovely addition to Dickerson's series of retellings.

The subtle (and cleverly not-so-subtle) tie-ins with parts of The Frog Prince and related stories are quite fun. And Margaretha is a great heroine, with her big heart and bold attitude. When she sees the need for action, she takes it - a bit recklessly at times, but in a way that makes for an entertaining read. Plus, you gotta love a heroine who isn't afraid to speak her mind...however long it takes to do so. ;)

Some elements of the plot reminded me a bit of The Fairest Beauty and The Captive Maiden, Dickerson's last two releases. Which, on the one hand, is cool because I love a good "on-the-run" journey that brings a hero and heroine closer together. But on the other hand, it feels like the stories are becoming a bit formulaic. With fairy-tale themes, perhaps that's partly to be expected.

The romance includes some tender moments while focusing on their blossoming friendship. I hoped for a little more from the ending...especially given how the villain is introduced so early in the story and how the danger is built up over time. Still, The Princess Spy is all-around cuteness, and I look forward to seeing what Dickerson does with more fairy tales in her upcoming releases!

*With thanks to Zonderkidz and NetGalley for providing me with an e-ARC of the book in exchange for my honest opinion.*

Note: The Princess Spy releases November 4, 2014.


Ganise C said...

That is a very interesting synopsis. Nice review, Amber!

Amber Holcomb said...


Isn't it? I love the suspense elements in Dickerson's stories. :)

Thank you for the kind words, and for checking out my review!


Anonymous said...

I enjoyed this one too! It really was the sweetest one I have read by Melanie! :)

Ella said...

Thanks for reviewing this book!!!
I read " The Merchant's Daughter" a long time ago and I didn't really enjoy it. Despite that I have been wanting to give Melanie Dickerson's other books a try.

This one sounds very cute, so maybe I will give it a try.

Tressa @ Wishful Endings said...

This is another one I have and am looking forward to reading. I have all her books on my list, but haven't actually gotten to any of them, so I'll probably read this one first and then read the others. I love cute, so I should love this one! :)

Tressa @ Wishful Endings

Amber Holcomb said...


Ooh, you're in for a treat, catching up on Melanie Dickerson's retellings! :) They're all quite cute, but especially this one. I think my favorite so far is The Fairest Beauty. Enjoy!