The Goose Girl
By Shannon Hale
Bloomsbury, 2003. 383 pgs. Young Adult.
Princess Anidori of Kildenree is traveling to Bayern to marry the prince, whom she has never met. On the way, however, her lady-in-waiting and part of the guard betray Ani. Ani is forced to hide, and her lady-in-waiting steals her identity and enters Bayern acting as the princess. Ani disguises herself and finds shelter working as a goose girl, while trying to devise a plan to keep her devious lady-in-waiting from wedding the prince and leading Bayern to war against the unsuspecting Kildenree. Along the way, she discovers true friends, as well as finding strength and ability in herself.
I enjoyed this book, as well as the subsequent books in the series. The plot moves well, and Ani is a likable character; her growth is gradual and belivable. The villans are truly evil and dislikable. The subplots, such as Ani's blossoming romance, tie well into the rest of the book and provide interesting twists. I listened to this book on CD and enjoyed it in that format as well as the print format.