Author: Alex Flinn
Release Date: February 14th, 2012
Published by: HarperTeen
Read: July 13th, 2012
I’m not your average hero. I actually wasn’t your average anything. Just a poor guy working an after-school job at a South Beach shoe repair shop to help his mom make ends meet. But a little magic changed it all.
It all started with the curse. And the frognapping. And one hot-looking princess, who asked me to lead a rescue mission.
There wasn’t a fairy godmother or any of that. And even though I fell in love along the way, what happened to me is unlike any fairy tale I’ve ever heard. Before I knew it, I was spying with a flock of enchanted swans, talking (yes, talking!) to a fox named Todd, and nearly trampled by giants in the Everglades.
Don’t believe me? I didn’t believe it either. But you’ll see. Because I knew it all was true, the second I got CLOAKED.
What I thought:
John (Johnny) is the only son of a poor mother, who owns a shoe repair shop. Their father left when he was young, and now Johnny works hard to keep the business going and pay the bills. It’s a desperate time and they need the money, so when he’s offered ten thousand dollars from a princess to find her brother, he’s all for it at first. Until he’s told that the prince was turned into the frog by a witch, and that he will need to use a magic cloak and find the prince and then have him kissed so he can become normal again. He thinks she’s crazy at first, but after testing out the cloak and finding that it can transport him anywhere he wishes, he goes for it.
There are a bunch of smaller myths inserted in here that you would have read as a kid, like the Seven Swans, the Golden Bird and many more from the Brothers Grimm. The author fits all these little things in here seamlessly, and I was so excited when I recognized some of them.
Johnny’s journey takes him all over, finding clues and talking to animals who were once human, using another magical device given to him, hoping it will eventually lead him to where the frog prince is. The other kingdom who helped turn the prince into a frog, wants to take over and make the princess marry their own son, and are out to kill the prince before Johnny can get to it. So while escaping them, his best friend Meg joins in and helps him as best she can. She’s madly in love with him, but he’s clueless of course.
I loved this fairytale mash up of different myths, it was a great little read, full of action and magic and secret love. If you loved her Beastly book, you definitely need to try this one out.
Recommended for young adult fans of fantasy and fairy tale retellings.