The Princess Diaries by Meg Cabot (audiobook)

The Princess Diaries by Meg Cabot

Cabot, Meg.  The Princess Diaries. Listening Library.  2005. ISBN 0307243265

Reader’s Annotation: What teenage girl doesn’t dream of being a princess? Mia Thermopolis for one who thinks this is her worst dream come true.

Plot Summary: Mia Thermopolis lives in New York with her mother and bemoans her life as the unpopular girl with the bad hair and lack of breasts.  She’s also in love with the most popular guy in school, Josh Richter, who is dating Mia’s nemesis, Lana Weinberger.  Things only get worst when her father delivers the news that he cannot have any more children which makes Mia the heir to the throne of Genovia.  What more can go wrong?

Critical Evaluation

This was a perfectly charming book and was narrated by Anne Hathaway.  Anne did a wonderful job bringing the characters to life and I highly suggest the audiobook.

Mia is a quirky character who is both likeable and yet irritating at times.  Any girl who is the wallflower or the unpopular girl can related to Mia’s obsessing over the cute guy in school and  why don’t people like her more.  Her whining about being a princess does get to be a bit much at times especially since I did not understand why she thought it would be such a bad thing to have her classmates find out.  It doesn’t seem like she’s as upset over the idea of having to move to Genovia at some point or worrying over her classmates fawning over her. Instead she thinks she will be ridiculed which doesn’t seem like a natural response.  I also wanted to shake her for her obliviousness over her best friend’s brother, Michael’s, feelings toward her. Still her humor saves her from being totally unlikeable.

The story is told through a series of diary entries made by Mia chronicling her failing algebra grades, her mother’s relationship with her algebra teacher, her romantic issues as well the ups and downs of learning to be the princess of Genovia.  The format works well as she writes in a manner that echoes how teenage girls would think and react to situations.

About the author

Meg Cabot is the author of almost 50 books for both adults and young adults.  One of her most well-known series is The Princess Diaries series which currently has over a dozen books making up the series and has also been made into a motion picture featuring Anne Hathaway.

Her most recent young adult series is the paranormal series Abandon and her Airhead trilogy.  She currently resides in Key West with her husband and two cats.

Genre

Contemporary

Curriculum Ties

English

Book talking idea

What would you do if you were princess for a day?

In the book Mia, her best friend Lily and Lily’s brother, Michael play a Who Would You Pick game. For a book talk play a similar game with movie stars or even young adult book characters.

Reading level

Ages 12 and up.

Challenge Issues

N/A

Why did I include this book?

Meg Cabot is such a major name in young adult books and with this being such a popular series I had to include it.

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Filed under Fiction, Realistic/Contemporary

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