YOUTH BOOK REVIEW – June 2010

Palace of Mirrors  by Margaret Peterson Haddix

Reviewed by Rachel Sage*

Palace of Mirrors is a book that puts you back to where castles stand tall and princesses, well, are princesses.  But what happens when a dark force kills the king and leaves the queen suffering? Where shall the princess go so that she may live? Cecilia is a “normal” girl by day, doing her chores, fishing with her best friend, Harper, washing the clothes, scaling the fish, and fetching the cow.  But by night she is sitting at her table reading royal books, learning Latin, geography, and much more. Once every week there is a man who comes to town in a black-as-midnight cloak. He goes into Cecilia’s cabin supposedly to see her guardian, Nanny Grantine, but truly he is one of the last royal knights! This knight is her teacher of the “royal arts”. He teaches her how to be a princess and how to determine whether you have power or not.Now we are back to non-royal Cecilia.  One day at the fishing pond Cecilia thinks she sees something and then she does….a dog is thrown at her face from out of nowhere but she swears she saw a humans’ shadow. Harper, her friend, steps in to comfort her, but there is an awkward moment, and since Harper is a boy who doesn’t really know what to do, they just keep walking. Then Cecilia realizes that she can’t put Nanny in danger anymore, so she sets off accompanied by Harper to Cortonia the royal capital and that is where the journey begins!~    *Rachel is a 5th grade student at Delaware Academy