To prepare myself for this third book in a series, I first reviewed my review from a couple of years ago of Tuesdays at the Castle. Then, I read Wednesdays in the Tower, for which I received an ARC that I never got around to reading. Then, I was ready for Thursdays With the Crown.
I wouldn’t recommend reading these books out of order or reading just one, unless it’s the first one. Wednesdays in the Tower ends on a cliffhanger, and I’m glad I didn’t read it back when I would have had to wait for the third book. In Wednesdays, Princess Celie imprints or tames or bonds with a baby griffin. It’s sort of like Dragonriders of Pern, except for kids and with griffins. Yes, Celie eventually rides the flying griffin. The entire book is about Celie and the griffin that she names Rufus. At the end of that book, Celie and some of her friends and family are transported to the land where the Castle originated, and from that point on things take a more serious turn as the friends try to find out why the Castle is behaving so oddly and what they can do to fix things there and back in the land of Sleyne.
My favorite part of these two books in the series is not the plot, not the theme of “war is evil and griffins are great”, not even the characters exactly, although I like them all. My favorite part is when Prince Lulath of Grath talks. Lulath is from another country, and he speaks Sleynth only as a second language, rather brokenly. I absolutely love the way he talks. I don’t know if a few examples will give you the idea, and I’m not really supposed to quote from the ARC. Nevertheless, Lulath’s speech is so broken and funny that it can’t be a problem to quote just a little:
“Oh so much fear,” Lulath said. “But then I would look to myself in the mirror and say, Lulath, you silly big man! Here is being two beautiful princesses and a noble prince in so much the danger! Have they food? Have they warmth? You must be putting on your shoes like a very man, and going forth! And so I am!” He nodded firmly. “It is why also I am studying the strategying when I am young. I am having so much fear in the night, I think, I will learn all that is brave and very, and will also go forth with strongness!”
“I thank you, Friend Pogue,” Lulath said cheerfully. “It is because I am looking such a silly man. I am liking the clothes too much, it is a thing that I know. You are not thinking that I am having much brain.”
The stories are fun and a little bit dramatic towards the end, but it was Lulath that kept me reading. I wish I could write him into a play for my children’s drama group to perform. Or I could impersonate him for (next) Halloween, but no one would know who I was imitating. Anyway, Lulath is very being my favorite.
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This book is also nominated for a Cybil Award, but the views expressed here are strictly my own and do not reflect or determine the judging panel’s opinions.