In the series’ second installment, Princess Aislin draws on her pedrasi powers to confront a powerful enemy.
Exploring Mount Gora’s tunnels at the behest of her royal pedrasi grandfather, Aislin discovers vicious trolls collecting dragons’ eggs for a mysterious being they refer to as “her.” Using pedrasi powers to dispatch the trolls—with help from cavern-dwelling spriggans—Aislin, her guards, and her doll friend, Twinket, return to the pedrasi palace. On the way they meet angry fairies, upset that Aislin’s royal fairy grandparents are moving to the human world and opening the borders for humans to enter the magic realms. Asked to help with the transition, Aislin travels to the fairy palace, where, ignoring relentless lobbying from fairy wannabes, she selects her own multispecies ladies-in-waiting, provoking more fairy ire. Her royal relatives, too, realize mischief’s afoot. When, after the move, human nobles visit—including odious Rory and Aislin’s friend Tomas—events prove harm is intended, but by whom? After a strong opening, the story quickly loses steam, remaining flat and nearly action-free until the final 30 pages. Exciting events are summarized, not shown. The author’s tendency to repeat what readers already know in dialogue that’s long on introductory greetings and action summaries and short on plot advancement and character development doesn’t help. Aislin’s gifts—exceptional magical powers, wide popularity, and prodigious beauty—deprive her of challenges, leaching her story of suspense. Human characters default to white; nonhuman but human-seeming Aislin has brown skin and long, dark hair.
Strictly for princess-culture devotees with a high boredom threshold. (Fantasy. 8-11)