The Princess Diaries
By Meg Cabot
Harper Avon, 2000. 238 pgs. Young Adult
Mia Thermopolis has enough to worry about: she's flunking algebra, her mom just started dating her algebra teacher, and she can't get Josh Richter to notice her. But when her father tells her that she is, in fact, the Princess of Genovia, it seems that her problems are just beginning. Now she must endure "princess lessons" with her grandmother, including a makeover, all while trying to remain inconspicuous and trying to have a normal teen life.
Written in journal entries, Mia's personality comes through as funny and engaging and is generally a solid character who is easy to like. The only thing that was a bit irritating was Mia's outright resistance to becoming a princess. I wish the author had made more of an effort to give understandable reasons for Mia's distress at the situation. Still, the entertaining plot and humorous commentary will keep you turning pages. This is a clean book, but I would still recommend it for older teens as some of Mia's worries involve more "mature" things. If in doubt, parents, read it first.