Another Solid Book

The Beautiful Pretender (A Medieval Fairy Tale) - Melanie Dickerson

This was another book from that set I got on my Nook. I found this story, a fractured version of The Princess and the Pea, to be better written in some areas and not as well written in others.


I find the idea that the Margrave of Thornbeck would want a bride that would show compassion and interest in the plights of his people, and that he would orchestrate a series of tests to make an arranged marriage a bit more palatable. I also find the idea that the Earl of Plimmwald would send someone to disguise herself as his runaway daughter; however, I would have chosen someone who resembled his daughter more and would be better educated as an Earl's daughter.


I found Avelina, the main character, to be highly compelling. She was strong in much the same way as Odette was in the previous book, but also in different ways. As a servant, much of what she knows is from her skills to better serve her lady, such as braiding hair, picking locks to give her lady access to things her father didn't want her to get at, etc. i also found her to be highly headstrong and slightly less naive than Odette, which makes sense from the fact that she is a maidservant who has had to grow up very quickly. One thing I could not reconcile, however, is Avelina's knowledge of how to read Latin. I'm not sure a maidservant would be approved of being learned enough to read Latin, considering women reading at all was considered dangerous for centuries.


The overall mystery and political aspects of the story were very well written. It honestly had me guessing to the end as to what would happen. I like how the elements of the previous book, particularly the rumor that Margrave Reinhart had murdered his brother, really came to the forefront in this book.


Again, there were strong elements of Christianity in this book, but like before, it mostly involved praying and reading the Bible, both of which made sense in the context of 15th century Holy Roman Empire.