Ideas for Learners Promoting Literacy, Inquiry, and Meaningful Learning Experiences

Princess Academy by Shannon Hale


Book Summary

This is the story of a group of girls from a remote mountain village sent to an academy to learn to behave like princesses. Some of them hope to be chosen to be the prince's choice and future queen, but they have been brought up to value hard work far more than genteel manners or sumptuous clothes.  This book will appeal to any reader who knows what it's like to feel left out, as well as to readers who admire courage in ordinary people. 

Princess Academy book cover
Princess Academy

Companion books to Princess Academy include Palace of Stone and The Forgotten Sisters.

Palace of Stone book cover
Palace of Stone
The Forgotten Sisters book cover
The Forgotten Sisters

Book Review

This title isn't the best fit for this text, in my view. This isn't a stereotypical pretty clothes princess kind of a story - it's more cerebral, and the distinct language patterns and supernatural element are a bit odd for some readers. This is a text worth the effort; it's not a shallow excursion.

left quotation mark

Miri felt torn in half, like a shirt made into rags.  How could she bear to leave her family and walk into some lowlander unknown?" p. 33

Topics and Themes for this book:

  • Social and Economic Class Systems
  • Being Alone in a Crowd
  • Social Power
  • Family Relationships (father-daughter)
  • The Power of Education
  • Being Yourself

Discussion Questions for this book:

The best discussion questions, of course, are generated by and contemplated by readers. These questions are designed to avoid major spoilers about the book, and to provide a starting point for teachers, parents, and student reading groups.

**Questions Coming Soon**

If you liked this book, you might also like . . .

Stargirl book cover
A Time to Dance book cover
A Time to Dance
A Little Princess book cover
A Little Princess