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Author: Hale, Shannon
While attending a strict academy for potential princesses with the other girls from her mountain village, fourteen-year-old Miri discovers unexpected talents and connections to her homeland.
Princess Academy, Bk. 1
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 6.00
Points: 10.0 Quiz: 104732
|Reading Counts Information:|
Interest Level: 6-8
Reading Level: 4.80
Points: 16.0 Quiz: 38363
Newbery Honor, 2006
Common Core Standards
Grade 4 → Reading → RL Literature → 4.RL Key Ideas & Details
Grade 4 → Reading → RL Literature → 4.RL Craft & Structure
Grade 4 → Reading → RL Literature → 4.RL Integration & Knowledge of Ideas
Grade 4 → Reading → RL Literature → Texts Illustrating the Complexity, Quality, & Rang
Grade 5 → Reading → RL Literature → 5.RL Key Ideas & Details
Grade 5 → Reading → RL Literature → 5.RL Integration & Knowledge of Ideas
Grade 5 → Reading → RL Literature → Texts Illustrating the Complexity, Quality, & Rang
Grade 6 → Reading → RL Literature → 6.RL Key Ideas & Details
Grade 6 → Reading → RL Literature → 6.RL Craft & Structure
Grade 6 → Reading → RL Literature → 6.RL Integration of Knowledge & Ideas
Grade 6 → Reading → RL Literature → 6.RL Range of Reading & Level of Text Complexity
Grade 6 → Reading → CCR College & Career Readiness Anchor Standards fo
Grade 7 → Reading → RL Literature → 7.RL Key Ideas & Details
Grade 7 → Reading → RL Literature → 7.RL Range of Reading & LEvel of Text Complexity
Grade 7 → Reading → CCR College and Career Readiness Anchor Standards for Reading
Grade 5 → Reading → RL Literature → 5.RL Craft & Structure
Kirkus Reviews (+) (07/15/05)
School Library Journal (+) (10/05)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (09/05)
The Hornbook (00/09/12)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 10/01/2005 Gr 5-9-The thought of being a princess never occurred to the girls living on Mount Eskel. Most plan to work in the quarry like the generations before them. When it is announced that the prince will choose a bride from their village, 14-year-old Miri, who thinks she is being kept from working in the quarry because of her small stature, believes that this is her opportunity to prove her worth to her father. All eligible females are sent off to attend a special academy where they face many challenges and hardships as they are forced to adapt to the cultured life of a lowlander. First, strict Tutor Olana denies a visit home. Then, they are cut off from their village by heavy winter snowstorms. As their isolation increases, competition builds among them. The story is much like the mountains, with plenty of suspenseful moments that peak and fall, building into the next intense event. Miri discovers much about herself, including a special talent called quarry speak, a silent way to communicate. She uses this ability in many ways, most importantly to save herself and the other girls from harm. Each girl's story is brought to a satisfying conclusion, but this is not a fluffy, predictable fairy tale, even though it has wonderful moments of humor. Instead, Hale weaves an intricate, multilayered story about families, relationships, education, and the place we call home.-Linda L. Plevak, Saint Mary's Hall, San Antonio, TX Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information. - Copyright 2005 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Bulletin for the Center... - 09/01/2005 According to ancient Danlandish law, the teenaged girls of a given city or town must prepare for one of them to be chosen by their prince as his future bride. For the first time, the priests have divined that that town shall be a tiny cluster of quarriers’ huts on the mountainside, the home of a poverty-stricken people despised by more affluent lowlanders. Though initially unwilling to participate in the new state-run princess academy, fourteen-year-old Miri, the daughter of a quarrier, soon finds the things she learns (such as “Commerce” and “Diplomacy”) can improve the living standard of her village and the relationship between the girls and their bad-tempered schoolmistress. By the time the prince arrives, Miri has developed ability in leadership and in what her people call “quarry-speech”, telepathic communication via the stone the quarriers harvest from the peaks, and her skill in both these areas saves the lives of everyone at the academy. Because she is small, Miri sees herself as useless in her working community of burly laborers, and her envy of those larger and stronger than she contrasts powerfully with her later pleasure in her growing gifts. Miri’s culture is deftly drawn; snippets from the quarriers’ working songs lead each chapter, and the harsh yet beautiful physical and cultural details of Miri’s world keep this optimistic tale believable. This could be a useful introduction to fantasy for realistic-novel buffs, the authentic sniping and backbiting of jealous girls cooped up together for a year, the character-driven plot, and the vigorous prose will carry readers of all kinds into the center of the story. - Copyright 2005 The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois.
Booklist - 06/01/2005 Miri would love to join her father and older sister as a miner in Mount Eskel's quarry. Not a glamorous aspiration for a 14-year-old, perhaps, but the miners produce the humble village's prize stone, linder, and mining is a respected occupation that drives the local economy. When the local girls are rounded up to compete for the hand of the kingdom's prince, Miri, the prize student in the Princess Academy, gets her chance to shine. In addition to her natural intelligence and spunk, she discovers an intuitive, and at times unspoken, language that grew out of work songs in the mines and uses linder as a medium. With this quarry-speech giving a boost to her courage and intelligence, Miri leads her classmates in the fight against being treated as social inferiors in the academy, at the same time educating herself in ways that will better the village. Hale nicely interweaves feminist sensibilities in this quest-for-a-prince-charming, historical-fantasy tale. Strong suspense and plot drive the action as the girls outwit would-be kidnappers and explore the boundaries of leadership, competition, and friendship. - Copyright 2005 Booklist.