Title : The Princess Diaries
Author : Meg Cabot
Genre : Young Adult / Chick-lit
Price : Rs 499
ISBN : 0061479934
Publisher : Harper Teen
Total no. of titles in the series : 17 (includes novels, novellas and companion books)
First Published : 2000
Summary : Mia Thermopolis has many things to worry about – a best friend who produces a TV show, and is stalked by a weird guy who has a fetish for shoes, the fact that her crush, the most popular boy in school, Josh Richter only has eyes for Lana Weinberger, her arch-enemy, and a mother who is dating her Algebra teacher – without having to find out that she is not Mia Thermopolis.
She is Amelia Mignonette Grimaldi Thermopolis Renaldo, the princess of Genovia. Her paternal grandmother, the Dowager Princess of Genovia arrives in New York to groom her into a proper princess who, Mia soon finds out, has to be everything that she is not.
Lilly says Josh's synapses were probably misfiring that day, due to heatstroke or something. She said he probably thought I looked familiar but couldn't place my face without the cement block walls of Albert Einstein High behind me. Why else, she asked, would the most popular senior in high school say hey to me, Mia Thermopolis, a lowly freshman? But I know it wasn't heatstroke. The truth is, when he's away from Lana and all his jock friends, Josh is a totally different person. The kind of person who doesn't care if a girl is flat-chested or wears size-ten shoes. The kind of person who can see beyond all that into the depths of a girl's soul. I know because when I looked into his eyes that day at Bigelows, I saw the deeply sensitive person inside him, struggling to get out.
Lilly says I have an overactive imagination and a pathological need to invent drama in my life. She says the fact that I'm so upset about my mom and Mr. G is a classic example.
Sudeshna's take : The Princess Diaries is a humorous and engaging take on the life of a New York city high school student, but with a twist. While there are the regular challenges of school life that Mia has to deal with, the additional pressure of finding out that she is a princess plunges her into unknown territories, which becomes the life of the novel. The characters are well-built to add to a fast-paced plot, and there isn't a single dull page in the book. In fact, I finished it in one sitting.
The format makes the book easy to read, and teen-aged girls will adore this book once they get hold of it. Although the story may sound a bit off-landish at first, Ms Cabot has crafted the story so well that everything becomes more than believable.
It is one of those stories that you will want to read again and again. I'd say, do read it!
Rating : 4.5/5.0