It’s no secret that I like fairy tales. Beautiful princess, handsome prince, fighting the bad guy, true love…what’s not to like? There is one, however, that’s never been a favorite of mine–Sleeping Beauty. I just didn’t see the point. This girl pricks her finger on a spindle, falls asleep, is awakened by a kiss, a witch gets mad, the witch is killed, and they all live happily ever after. Not my thing. Well, my lastest read, A Kiss in Time, is a retelling of Sleeping Beauty by acclaimed author Alex Flinn. It puts a new spin on this story, and I must say that I like this version a lot better. When I was reading, I was reminded of Enchanted, the movie where a fairy tale princess is magically transported to modern-day Manhattan. I adore that movie, and I feel the same way about this book.
Princess Talia of Euphrasia has lived her entire almost-sixteen years in fear of spindles. At Talia’s christening, a curse was placed on her by the evil witch Malvolia stating that the princess would prick her finger on a spindle before her sixteenth birthday and die. A fairy modified the curse a bit so that the princess wouldn’t die. Instead, she and everyone in Euphrasia would sleep until Talia was awakened by true love’s first kiss.
Nearly sixteen years pass, and Talia has been bombarded with talk of this curse. Spindles are outlawed from Euphrasia to protect her, and she is horribly sheltered. She can’t go anywhere, and she’s tired of it. As her sixteenth birthday approaches, Talia can finally see an end to a life full of fearing a curse and always being told what to do. The curse has not been fulfilled, and she’s almost sixteen. (The key word here is “almost.”) Well, guess what? Shortly before her birthday celebration, Talia is searching for her perfect dress when she happens upon an unfamiliar room. An old lady is inside with just the dresses Talia is looking for. The old lady just needs a bit of help from Talia. Just hold this sharp, pointy thing for a bit…lights out.
Fastforward three hundred years…
Jack is in Europe on a boring trip full of museums and other stuff he’s not interested in, so he decides to escape for a bit. He and his buddy Travis walk through a dense hedge and find a village where everyone appears to be sleeping, even the horses. They soon find a castle. Jack is drawn to the highest tower where he discovers a sleeping girl. She’s beautiful, and he feels almost compelled to kiss her. He does, and she wakes up. Surprise!
Join Jack and Talia as they deal with expectations, customs, and technologies (or lack thereof) of different time periods, parents, ex-girlfriends, running away, a continued threat from Malvolia, and a three-hundred-year age difference. Can this even be real? Do Jack and Talia have any hope of getting together under these circumstances? He’s a slacker; she’s a princess. Do they even want to be together? Read A Kiss in Time by Alex Flinn to find out!