Craze, Galaxy. The Last Princess. 295 p. 2012. Little, Brown Books for Young Readers. Hardcover $17.99. ISBN 9780316185486.
This books combines two things that are WHITE HOT right now:
a post-apocalyptic future
|Photo by Rising Damp|
the British royal family
|Photo by anonlinegreenworld|
Seriously. Seriously. How awesome is that?! Talk about high concept.
So when I picked up The Last Princess, thinking I'd just browse a few pages, I found that I absolutely could not put it down. Luckily for me, it's a quick read! The first two-thirds of the book are seriously edge-of-your-seat exciting-- a crazy roller-coaster ride in a futuristic Great Britain that has been ravaged and isolated from the rest of the world by an environmental disaster. As the nation falters in the aftermath, a sinister plot against the royal family comes to fruition and young Princess Eliza finds herself on the run, infiltrating enemy territory with her sights set on one goal: revenge.
It's really suspenseful.
The action slows down a little bit in the last third of the book, but is still definitely engaging and enjoyable, with an appealing romance amidst suspense, and a satisfying conclusion that wraps up the story nicely, yet leaves the door open for a sequel.
The author includes some details that will please Anglophiles-- the royal family's children all have family names, such as Elizabeth, Mary, and James, for example. On the other hand, there are a few inconsistencies. One thing that snapped me out of the story is that the main character does a lot of "interstate" travel... in Great Britain. Granted, in my frenzied reading of the first few chapters, I might have missed some kind of futuristic explanation about why there are interstate highways in a place with no states. But... I'm not too sure about that.
Another thing that gave me pause was a mention of "Princess Kate." It was an aww-worthy moment, but assuming this is the distant future, wouldn't the Duchess of Cambridge have eventually become Queen, or Queen Consort? Admittedly, my knowledge of the way titles work in the British monarchy is a bit fuzzy, so I'd love to hear any experts weigh in.
Still, these minor nitpicks didn't detract from my overall enjoyment of the book. I didn't go into it with significant expectations-- I wasn't sure what to expect, but I was hoping for a diverting, compelling read. And this one definitely delivered! I had a great time reading it, and will look forward to the sequel.
The Last Princess hits bookstore shelves today, and I recommend checking it out.