While the tone in this book is much more lighthearted and slightly irreverent when compared to several of the latest YA fairytale reimaginings, fans of books like Stacey Jay’s Princess of Thorns or RC Lewis’ Stitching Snow will probably get a kick out of Spelled. Oz isn’t the only thing that gets an update here – pretty much every story you every loved gets some kind of a cameo. If you are a purist with no sense of humor, you can skip it, but if you are up for a little adventure and snark this summer, definitely give Spelled a chance.
Self centered and spoiled Princess Dorthea of the Emerald Kingdom makes one little wish upon an enchanted star and singlehandedly breaks the rules of magic and storybooks. Now her mom and dad, the King and Queen, are stuck in Kansas, her fiancé has been turned into . . . well, it looks like a puppy with wings, and she is left to find the magic over the rainbow with only a kleptomaniac kitchen girl to help. This isn’t the Oz we all know and love, but a wicked mishmash of all the storybooks you ever cherished. The characters were enchantingly human in their flaws. Dorthea is not as smart as she thinks she is, and readers will enjoy her bumpy ride to maturity — she reminded me of Cher from Clueless! The “handsome” prince, too has some work to do on his charming. And that snarky, bitter kitchen girl? Well, she is a surprise for everyone right up until the end. The adventures of this band of unlikely heroes is unique and original. Success is never certain, and readers won’t be able to guess what is going to happen in the next chapter, let alone predict the resolution. Fast paced and clever, Spelled will engage readers of all ages.
I received an ARC from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.