Sunday, November 4, 2012

The Hero's Guide to Saving Your Kingdom by Christopher Healy

There isn't a single person in this world that hasn't heard about the heroic deeds of Prince Charming. But were you aware that there is more than one? There is no need to fret, Christopher Healy has collected four of the most popular Princes Charming and set them off on an adventure of a life time.

There's Frederic, Cinderella's prince, who doesn't take any risk. Gustav, Rapunzel's prince, yearns for his parents' approval and wishes to rid himself of the reputation that has followed him since his heroic deed. Liam, Sleeping Beauty's prince, who realizes that, despite the praise he receives for his good deeds, the people of his kingdom are rotten to the core. And lastly, Duncan, Snow White's prince, who Together, these four princes set off to rescue Cinderella (just called Ella) from the evil witch, Zaubera (the name give to the antagonist in the Rapunzel tale). But things aren't always as they seem, because even though the princes mean well, they're not all that the songs make them out to be. 

Christopher Healy has a gift with words. Very few writers making their debuts these days do. Like most of the juvenile fiction I pick up, The Hero's Guide to Saving Your Kingdom appeared on my shelving cart one morning so I sat down and took a peek. Just the prologue alone had me in stitches:
Prince Charming is afraid of old ladies. Didn't know that did you?
Don't worry. There's a lot you don't know about Prince Charming: Prince Charming has no idea how to use a sword; Prince Charming has no patience for dwarfs; Prince Charming has an irrational hatred of capes.
Some of you may not even realize that there's more than on Prince Charming. And that none of them are actually named Charming. No one is. Charming isn't a name; it's an adjective.
And you're hooked right? No? Trust me, you will be.

Healy brings to life characters we've known since childhood, giving them personalities that jump off the page. (Take that, Disney!) Never did we think that the prince who awakes Snow White is absentminded and childlike. Nor did we peg Rapunzel's prince as a brute who refuses to show any emotion for another being. And it's just not the princes that new personalities were given, take Briar Rose - a.k.a. Sleeping Beauty - how many of use figured she was a - well, since this is a children's book, I'll refrain from colorful language - very mean-spirited female?

And his voice, much like his characters, leap off the page. It's fast-paced, jam packed with humor and action - a fun read for adults and children. So if you're looking for the next big series, I'm putting my money on Christopher Healy's Hero's Guide.

You may purchase The Hero's Guide to Saving Your Kingdom on Amazon or Barnes and Noble. It is also available for your Kindle and Nook. Until next time, keep on huntin'.

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