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Anidori-Kiladra Talianna Isilee, Crown Princess of Kildenree, spends the
first years of her life under her aunt's guidance learning to
communicate with animals. As she grows up Ani develops the skills of
animal speech, but is never comfortable speaking with people, so when
her silver-tongued lady-in-waiting leads a mutiny during Ani's journey
to be married in a foreign land, Ani is helpless and cannot persuade
anyone to assist her. Becoming a goose girl for the king, Ani
eventually uses her own special, nearly magical powers to find her way
to her true destiny. Shannon Hale has woven an incredible, original and
magical tale of a girl who must find her own unusual talents before she
can become queen of the people she has made her own.

Look out for the other books in this series: Enna Burning, River Secrets, and Forest Born!
Published: Bloomsbury Publishing an imprint of Bloomsbury USA on
ISBN: 9781599904078
List price: $7.99
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The Goose Girl gently mesmerizes a reader of any age. Read and enjoy.more
A spellbinding new take on a traditional fairy tale with many allegories and points to ponder. The book features lots of magic, some romance, lessons learned by all characters and the reader, a fully developed world, and realistic characters. Cannot-put-it-down type of book fit for all libraries where teens are found.more
This book took a while to really get going, but it all paid off with a very satisfying ending of sweet justice. Most of the story was low-key with some intense, frustrating scenes thrown in. I don't think I would have given this five stars if it weren't for the last 100 pages or so of the book. This is another fairy tale that I need to read so I can see how much of the plot and characters can be credited to the author.more
On her way to marry a prince, Princess Anidori is betrayed and must become a goose girl to survive. The audio version is well done. The story continues in Enya Burning and River Secrets.more
A retold fairy tale, nicely done. Knowing the story prior to picking this up removed all the suspense for me, but the characters were engaging enough to keep me reading.more
An interesting story, the plot is formed about a traditional folktale by the same name so I knew the basic points before starting. I reason I didn't rate it higher was because the ending felt rushed and some of the main characters were a little flat. I was almsot rooting for the bad guys because at lease they made some personality. It was Hale's first book so...more
At first, I was only mildly interested in what was going on in this retelling of a classic fairy tale. However, once the action got started, I really enjoyed listening. The cast was perfect--voices, ages, gender; every voice seemed correct. I think this was/is especially true in terms of the emotional aspects of the characters--I could totally hear it in their voices, which was refreshing.

In terms of the story, I really enjoyed the character of Geric. His relationship with Ani, especially when she was the goose girl, was very realistic and I liked the humorous note that Hale wrote into their conversations. Another of my favorite characters was Enna. I am excited to read more and see what happens to her after these events. Though I haven't read the blurb on the back of the second book (I think I'll probably listen to that one too, if it is available), I hope she and Finn get together.

***SPOILER ALERT***
A few things that annoyed me about the book:
1. Imagine you need to tell someone something. Something that could mean you live or die--how would you go about it when you were facing them and surrounded by people? Would you shout and scream "Please! Let me say something! Please!"? Or, perhaps, would you JUST SAY WHAT YOU NEED TO SAY AND STOP YELLING STUPID CRAP? Yeah, I thought so too.
2. Imagine you're in the process of discovering that you can hear voices, whether they are from animals or nature. Regardless, if you heard a voice that told you you dropped something in a stream, would you just walk away? Neither would I.
3. I felt like Ani was an idiot for not running to her horse as soon as she thought something was up.
4. I didn't want the horse to die.more
Absolutely brilliant -- simple and charming but never simplistic.more
One of the best modern YA novels I've read. I loved every moment I spent following Ani through her adventures. How refreshing to find a strong female protagonist who evolves as a character over the course of the novel. AND it's incredibly well-written. I'm still a little iffy about princesses, but if my daughter wanted to read this, I would encourage her to do so. Well, when she's a little older. It would be a little intense for a 4.5yo.more
It took me a long time to get into this book. In fact, I started it once before and just wasn't caring too much, so quickly read the end and returned it. This time I soldiered on and did end up liking it. I'm not sure if I liked it enough to go on in the series, especially since I read somewhere that Enna Burning isn't as good, but I did really like the character of Enna, so maybe I willmore
Before I can give my review, I would like to confess that I have never read nor heard the fairytale, the Goose Girl of the Grimm Brothers so I don't have any idea whatsoever about the difference of this book to the original. Which I think wouldn't matter but I feel like I need to say that.Okay so here it goes.Anidori-Kilandra Talianna Isilee, was the Crown Princess of Kildenree, who was betrayed by her lady-in-waiting and was forced to hide herself in order for her to stay alive. She became a normal citizen of Bayern while she was hiding. She experienced how to work for money, she experienced being hungry and she even tended the king's geese just to survive. And in her experience as an animal worker, she made a few friends(human and animals) who helped her regain her rightful place as the betrothed Princess to the Prince of Bayern.I just can't put this book down. It's like my fingers and my eyes are glued to the pages. I was so engrossed as to what will happen to "Ani/Isi's" life and how she will reclaim her throne. The whole adventure was really amazing. The conflict became more and more complicated as the story progresses and I'm commending Shannon Hale for giving me such an awesome read. I didn't expected the ending at all. I mean, yes, I know that it will be a happy ever, after I expected that. But what's remarkable in this book is the sequence of how the "happy ever after" happened.And the characters were jumping right out of the page. Everyone just stood out for me but my favorite character of all is Razo and Enna. I'm also inlove in Isi and Geric's love story. It's not your cheesy, "fairytale-ish" romantic, for me it was realistic and it is happening in our era(except for the prince and princess title thingy)I highly recommend this book to everyone. If you love fairytales with a happy ever after ending then this is the best book for you.more
Grimm fairy tales are the best. They're bloody, oftentimes involve animal cruelty, and there always seems to be a truly inspired gruesome death at the end of each story. Not that I encourage either animal cruelty or gruesome deaths, but the Grimm boys were decidedly non-PC and I relish that sort of thing. Before I checked out this book, I had never heard of the German fairy tale called The Goose Girl. Basically in the tale, it told of a princess who was sent off to marry a prince in a far-off land, but who was betrayed by her lady-in-waiting. The lady-in-waiting forced her mistress to become a goose girl and the lady-in-waiting sucessfully impersonated the princess. Eventually all is righted, the prince marries the true princess, and the treacherous lady-in-waiting is placed naked in a barrel lined with nails and dragged through the streets by two horses until death.At @ronincats recommendation, I finally got this book from the library a couple of weeks ago, and the first few chapters really drew me in, so I investigated the orginal fairy tale, and then I got on with the story. I was interested to see how close Hale adhered to the original tale, and where she deviated. By the end of the book, I have to say that I was very impressed. Hale kept very close to the original tale, even in the more odder aspects, such as the death of the princess's beloved talking horse, Falada, and the impalement of Falada's head upon the city wall.I also love how Hale inserted the use of three different types of magic into the novel. There are people are gifted with people-speaking, which allows them to manipulate and persuade people to their way of thinking, and some people have the gift of animal-speaking, which allows them to talk with animals. Then, even rarer, is nature-speaking, which allows a person to communicate with certain elements of nature.What pleased me just as much, however, was the novel's likable main character. Ani, the protagonist and the princess, is a very shy, timid, slightly coddled, easily cowed, but kind girl who has to learn to deal with the circumstances presented to her by her lady-in-waiting. By the end of the book she develops into a regal, confident, and more responsibile princess. Oh, character arcs! How I adore thee.When I was younger I had read a couple of Hale's other books, Princess Academy and Book of a Thousand Days, but I don't remember a lot about them. Reading The Goose Girl has inspired me to go read those two again and then to go see about Hale's other books. Shannon Hale has found a fan in me.more
They say timing is everything, and I feel that this must have been the exact right time for me to read The Goose Girl by Shannon Hale. I loved this book that was based on a favorite Grimm Brother’s fairy tale. Taking the original story and adding twists and detail, Shannon Hale has enhanced the original, and by populating it with great characters, vivid descriptions and a juicy plotline she has offered up a book that deserves it’s beloved status.This is a book that allows you to transport to another world, another time, and get lost in the pages. It is also a tale that has a definite modern outlook toward love and relationships. Yes, it is a romantic princess tale, but with a strong leading character that shapes her world, doesn’t settle and is able to find happiness even when alone. Of course, when she does find her prince, he is just about perfect, being someone who obviously will allow his wife both freedom and her own sense of power. Written in lyrical, descriptive prose, Hale has build a believable world where these strange and magical happenings actually ring true. An incredibly imaginative and appealing read that has placed Shannon Hale in my must-read-more-of category.more
I have meant to read "The Goose Girl" for a very long time. I adore fairy tales but I don't find myself reading them nearly enough. I recently had the opportunity to meet Shannon Hale (in a line a mile long) and I am now kicking myself because I didn't know just how amazing she was at the time. Now if I were to meet her, I would probably gush. The first chapter or two into the story, I was afraid maybe it wouldn't be for me. I wasn't sure I understood where the story was taking me. But from the start I knew I loved Ani, the crown princess of Kildenree. After her father, the King's death, Ani's mother send her to marry the prince of the neighboring country Bayern. I think it is an estimated six weeks of travel by horse from one place to another. Ani's travel companions include a group her Kildenree guards as well as Ani's maid in waiting Selia. But Selia has hatched a devious plot with many of the traveling guardsman. They ambush they other guardsman and murder them. Selia travels on to Bayern to take the place as the prince's betrothed. With some help along the way, Ani makes it to Bayern and is put to work as a goose girl.This story was fantastic. The characters are all so endearing and lovable, except the bad guys who are absolutely hateful. We see Ani grow up and mature before our eyes. She finds friendship in the poor people of Bayern. She finds joy in labor intensive work. She learns firsthand of the troubles that plague the Bayern people. I eagerly followed the tale from page to page. I wanted to see how Ani was able to find her way to the King and prayed she would find a way to convince him, against all odds, that she was the rightful princess. I also enjoyed the soft romance that built between Ani and a local aide to the prince. Their time together wasn't a significant portion of the book, but it was fun and ever so sweet. I really liked Gedric.I would say this book is appropriate for adults and older middle schoolers. There isn't bad language or intimate scenes but there is quite a bit of violence portrayed throughout the tale. Also the language is poetic in its prose and I think that it might be intimidating to younger readers. I must say that I was completely in love with this book and fully intend to read the next three adventures of Bayern.more
Hesitant doesn't even begin to cover how I felt about starting this novel. I read the original Goose Girl fairy tale not so very long ago and I'm not a fan. It's short, has a lot of random events going on, and I hated the main character for being such a pushover. So I was not expecting the amazingness that is Shannon Hale's version of The Goose Girl. It's suspenseful, entertaining, funny, and simply a good story.I love how Shannon Hale took the core story of the fairy tale and completely expanded upon it. There were many familiar events, but a lot of new twists and turns as well. I have to say, for me, the ending was entirely unexpected. This may be because I read the original fairy tale first, and I thought it would be closer to that ending, but Hale makes it a much better, happier ending, which I very much appreciated.Mostly, this book is about growing up and finding out who you are. It is a young adult novel, but I think that older people can most definitely relate. Ani has to get away from her family and her normal obligations to find out who she is for herself. And what she finds is that she's more like a princess that she thought she was. Besides reading about the adventure and the intrigue (which kept me on the edge of my seat throughout the entire story), I enjoyed seeing Ani grow up and become more confident in herself. And I loved reading about her making all sorts of new friends among the royal animal-keepers. Friendship is another good theme in this novel -- a theme that will never get old for me.In terms of audiobooks, Full Cast is the way to go. They deliver on their name -- there is a full cast for this audiobook, meaning each character has its own person delivering their lines. At first, this was jarring for me. Being used to having at the most two narrators for an audiobook, hearing all the different voices was a bit strange. However, I got used to it and fell in love with the format. Every character is guaranteed to have his or her own quirks and personality, because there are different narrators throughout. I liked the music at the end of the chapters, but I thought it went on overly long. Overall, however, I loved this audiobook. (It did win a 2007 Audi Award for Achievement in Production and was a Finalist in another category, so I'm not surprised it was good.)If you can't tell already, I love this book. Whether it's in print or in audio, if you haven't read it yet and are a fan of fairy tale retellings, or a good story in general, I recommend this for you.more
Take a girl who is to inherit the throne but lacks the pizazz of her mother--and thus, self-confidence. Add a jealous lady-in-waiting, and arranged marriage, and a coup of sorts. Princess Ani has to discover her own strength, and in so doing, becomes the queen her new country needs, while falling in love along the way.I love retold fairy tales, and Shannon Hale is right up there with Robin McKinley for taking a short story and giving novel treatment that doesn't feel like it's being forced to fill pages.A nice choice especially for girls, with a subtle reminder that it's what you are deep down that counts.more
I had the pleasure of reading Shannon Hale's The Goose Girl not too long ago. It is my second time through this book and I enjoyed it just as much as I had the first time. The book, a retelling of the story by the Brothers Grimm, is wonderful and made perfect for modern readers.Shannon Hale does a great job in retelling this story. Her plot, characters, and descriptions make it perfect for adults and young adults alike. I was enthralled with every page, and always wanted to know what would happen next. This is a great read! I highly reccommend this book to anyone who loves a good story!more
In the novel The Goose Girl by Shannon Hale, Crown Princess of Kildereen, Princess Anidori, struggles greatly to prepare herself for the reign of queen only to have her chances suddenly stripped away from her. Deceived and betrayed by her mother, Princess Anidori is sent away to Bayern to marry a prince she’s never met. On their journey to Bayern, Princess Anidori’s envious lady-in-waiting, Selia, conspires to murder the princess so that she may impersonate her as the crown princess. Princess Anidori escapes her death sentence and apprehensively finds her way to Bayern. While in Bayern, Princess Anidori becomes the goose girl, responsible for tending to the royal geese. After facing many deathly obstacles, Princess Anidori, followed by a band of Forest friends, finds her way to the king and to attempt to reveal her true identity to himand unveil Selia’s secret. I consider The Goose Girl to be one of excellence. Even though it is a lengthy one, I thought this novel was a real page turner from beginning to end. The characters, the events, the entire book, had a sense of realism to it. Hale’s use of vivid descriptions and details help the reader to easily visualize what is happening in the story, to become one with the characters, and to easily become lost in this fantasy.more
In The Goose Girl, Shannon Hale retells the Grimm fairy tale of the same name. Ani, princess of Kilendree, is sent by her mother to Bayern to marry the prince and restore peace between the countries. During the journey, Ani’s lady-in-waiting, Selia, along with many of the guards, attack Ani. She narrowly escapes and must disguise herself as a goose girl. Selia, meanwhile, takes Ani’s identity and promotes a war in order to cover her secret. Timid Ani must find the courage and trust necessary to take back what is hers and save both countries. This story is an exciting adventure mixed with talking animals, magic, and a little bit of romance. Readers familiar with the original Goose Girl will enjoy all the similarities. Though hard to get into at the beginning, the pace picks up and then remains entertaining until the end. I did not like Ani’s character at first, but she quickly grew on me. This may have been deliberate by Hale, as Ani starts the story a shy, awkward girl, disliked by her peers. As a goose girl, she learns to relate to people, however, and eventually make friends. This is a wonderful book for girls in sixth grade and up. It is highly recommended for the young adult section of public libraries, as well as for middle and high school libraries.more
While reading the Goose Girl, I felt I was in the middle of a fairy tale. I should admit right now, I am a very big fan of re-told fairy tales, doesn't matter if it's the 100th re-telling of Cinderella or an off-beat tale, like the twelve dancing princesses. If it's a re-told fairy tale, chances are pretty huge that I am going to read it.Shannon Hale's writing style leant perfectly to the retelling of a fairy tale. It was simple, but not to the point of being condescending. I liked that she didn't try to put in a bunch of awkward bells and whistles, but just let the story come naturally. Honestly, I think the simplicity sucked me in. After reading North and South By Elizabeth Gaskell, I needed something with less nuance (wouldn't want my brain to explode), this was the perfect book for that.In case you can't tell, I really loved this book. I have to say, I cared so much about the main character, Ani, that I wound up becoming very enraged at certain parts. Let's just say I don't like when certain characters don't get their just desserts. I'm not about to give away spoilers, but I couldn't stop turning the pages because I wanted justice to be done. I mean, I guess I knew what was going to happen, since I had read the spoil-tastic amazon review, but I sort of forgot all of that and let myself be transported to Bayern. Personally, I find that to be a great standard to judge a book by. If I can get so into a book that I forget it's a hot day in hell, NY, then to me, that is a fantastic book.more
What would you do if your lady-in-waiting was jealous of you and wanted to steal your identity?Princess Anidori-Kildara Talianna Islee, Crown Princess of Kildenree (aka Ani) was never the poster child for being a Princess. Ani wanted to hang out with the swans, horses and other animals but her mother the Queen banned her from seeing them. After her father, the King, suddenly dies and her life takes a unexpected turn. She is told she is being shipped off to the ends of the kingdom to marry and Ani's life gets flipped upside down- literally. Cute story! I couldn't put it down and read it in a day! Great read for young or old (like me!)!!more
This is a wonderful retelling of the Goose Girl fairy tale. The Goose Girl, while not good with people-speak, learns to communicate with the animals and the wind, overcomes adversity, and lives happily everafter! What more could you ask for?more
As of right now, 6,990 fans have given The Goose Girl the top 5-star rating, and only 62 have given it a 1-star. I guess I'm going to be #6,991, because I obviously have found a new treasure :DD This is the first book I've read since finishing the epic saga The Bridei Chronicles, and I was relieved to have something less perplexing. I generally love fairy-tale retellings, as long as they dont go too "realistic," which is pretty much the modern euphemism for "trashy." I'd actually forgotten about the "Goose Girl" tale, as it never stuck out to me as one of the Grimms' major stories, but I found this book to be a fun but substantial read. I will say, I could have used more character development. I like my villains to be explained, and I kept wondering as to why the villains in this story (including a backstabbing "frenemy" who could very well have been Regina George's ancestor) went to the trouble of doing their deeds. Jealousy? Is that it? The perspective followed the main character, Ani/Isi, all throughout and I could have done with a shift to some other characters, just so I could get a better understanding of what they were going through. I really liked Shannon Hale's characters, but on the other hand of that compliment is a bit of a complaint, because I didnt really feel that they were as developed as they could have been. I especially liked Geric, and I agree with lots of other reviewers that he should have had more scenes. But Shannon Hale deserves an award (okay, she deserves ANOTHER award) just for writing a clean, sweet romance. I mean, maybe I read between the lines too much, but I was picking up on some very very decent messages about romance, and that's always a plus :D So if you like YA books where both characters have vice-like behavior, this book is NOT for you :P Cant wait to start Enna Burning. THANK YOU for recommending it, RAE!more
Just finished this book...and stayed up late to do so because it was that good. The Goose Girl, Ani or Isi--one in the same---she is the "Crown Princess" who was taught in her primary years by her aunt how to converse with animals and the aunt also eludes to the long lost language of the wind and earth. Perceived as a weakness and abnormal, Ani must hide her skill and try to emulate her future role as ruler of her land. In a blunt and war-avoiding move, her mother arranges for her to marry the prince of the "possible" enemy country. So Ani relinquishes her rights the crown and consents to her mother's plan; off she begins her nearly 4 month journey. Her entourage includes loyal guards and many soldiers and also her lady-in-waiting. Traveling in unknown lands in rugged terrain brings chaos and turmoil to the plot. No more can be said without giving so much away. Except....her title as Goose Girl is a journey that brings solitude and self-realization that strengthen her beyond measure. Hale's ability to take the reader (in this case, me) on an unpredictable journey that created a dynamic character set in the "royal" period with a hint of the fairytale realm minced in with a little magic WAS a welcome to my eyes! Hence the beginning attribute about staying up all night to finish. This was fresh plot with fully developed characters with a writing style that was not laborious and tedious. Hale has accomplished much with her writing. More companion books follow some characters--but I have yet to read them. I am savoring the GOOD READ. Her writing is similar to George's Sun and Moon, Ice and Snow.more
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Reviews

The Goose Girl gently mesmerizes a reader of any age. Read and enjoy.more
A spellbinding new take on a traditional fairy tale with many allegories and points to ponder. The book features lots of magic, some romance, lessons learned by all characters and the reader, a fully developed world, and realistic characters. Cannot-put-it-down type of book fit for all libraries where teens are found.more
This book took a while to really get going, but it all paid off with a very satisfying ending of sweet justice. Most of the story was low-key with some intense, frustrating scenes thrown in. I don't think I would have given this five stars if it weren't for the last 100 pages or so of the book. This is another fairy tale that I need to read so I can see how much of the plot and characters can be credited to the author.more
On her way to marry a prince, Princess Anidori is betrayed and must become a goose girl to survive. The audio version is well done. The story continues in Enya Burning and River Secrets.more
A retold fairy tale, nicely done. Knowing the story prior to picking this up removed all the suspense for me, but the characters were engaging enough to keep me reading.more
An interesting story, the plot is formed about a traditional folktale by the same name so I knew the basic points before starting. I reason I didn't rate it higher was because the ending felt rushed and some of the main characters were a little flat. I was almsot rooting for the bad guys because at lease they made some personality. It was Hale's first book so...more
At first, I was only mildly interested in what was going on in this retelling of a classic fairy tale. However, once the action got started, I really enjoyed listening. The cast was perfect--voices, ages, gender; every voice seemed correct. I think this was/is especially true in terms of the emotional aspects of the characters--I could totally hear it in their voices, which was refreshing.

In terms of the story, I really enjoyed the character of Geric. His relationship with Ani, especially when she was the goose girl, was very realistic and I liked the humorous note that Hale wrote into their conversations. Another of my favorite characters was Enna. I am excited to read more and see what happens to her after these events. Though I haven't read the blurb on the back of the second book (I think I'll probably listen to that one too, if it is available), I hope she and Finn get together.

***SPOILER ALERT***
A few things that annoyed me about the book:
1. Imagine you need to tell someone something. Something that could mean you live or die--how would you go about it when you were facing them and surrounded by people? Would you shout and scream "Please! Let me say something! Please!"? Or, perhaps, would you JUST SAY WHAT YOU NEED TO SAY AND STOP YELLING STUPID CRAP? Yeah, I thought so too.
2. Imagine you're in the process of discovering that you can hear voices, whether they are from animals or nature. Regardless, if you heard a voice that told you you dropped something in a stream, would you just walk away? Neither would I.
3. I felt like Ani was an idiot for not running to her horse as soon as she thought something was up.
4. I didn't want the horse to die.more
Absolutely brilliant -- simple and charming but never simplistic.more
One of the best modern YA novels I've read. I loved every moment I spent following Ani through her adventures. How refreshing to find a strong female protagonist who evolves as a character over the course of the novel. AND it's incredibly well-written. I'm still a little iffy about princesses, but if my daughter wanted to read this, I would encourage her to do so. Well, when she's a little older. It would be a little intense for a 4.5yo.more
It took me a long time to get into this book. In fact, I started it once before and just wasn't caring too much, so quickly read the end and returned it. This time I soldiered on and did end up liking it. I'm not sure if I liked it enough to go on in the series, especially since I read somewhere that Enna Burning isn't as good, but I did really like the character of Enna, so maybe I willmore
Before I can give my review, I would like to confess that I have never read nor heard the fairytale, the Goose Girl of the Grimm Brothers so I don't have any idea whatsoever about the difference of this book to the original. Which I think wouldn't matter but I feel like I need to say that.Okay so here it goes.Anidori-Kilandra Talianna Isilee, was the Crown Princess of Kildenree, who was betrayed by her lady-in-waiting and was forced to hide herself in order for her to stay alive. She became a normal citizen of Bayern while she was hiding. She experienced how to work for money, she experienced being hungry and she even tended the king's geese just to survive. And in her experience as an animal worker, she made a few friends(human and animals) who helped her regain her rightful place as the betrothed Princess to the Prince of Bayern.I just can't put this book down. It's like my fingers and my eyes are glued to the pages. I was so engrossed as to what will happen to "Ani/Isi's" life and how she will reclaim her throne. The whole adventure was really amazing. The conflict became more and more complicated as the story progresses and I'm commending Shannon Hale for giving me such an awesome read. I didn't expected the ending at all. I mean, yes, I know that it will be a happy ever, after I expected that. But what's remarkable in this book is the sequence of how the "happy ever after" happened.And the characters were jumping right out of the page. Everyone just stood out for me but my favorite character of all is Razo and Enna. I'm also inlove in Isi and Geric's love story. It's not your cheesy, "fairytale-ish" romantic, for me it was realistic and it is happening in our era(except for the prince and princess title thingy)I highly recommend this book to everyone. If you love fairytales with a happy ever after ending then this is the best book for you.more
Grimm fairy tales are the best. They're bloody, oftentimes involve animal cruelty, and there always seems to be a truly inspired gruesome death at the end of each story. Not that I encourage either animal cruelty or gruesome deaths, but the Grimm boys were decidedly non-PC and I relish that sort of thing. Before I checked out this book, I had never heard of the German fairy tale called The Goose Girl. Basically in the tale, it told of a princess who was sent off to marry a prince in a far-off land, but who was betrayed by her lady-in-waiting. The lady-in-waiting forced her mistress to become a goose girl and the lady-in-waiting sucessfully impersonated the princess. Eventually all is righted, the prince marries the true princess, and the treacherous lady-in-waiting is placed naked in a barrel lined with nails and dragged through the streets by two horses until death.At @ronincats recommendation, I finally got this book from the library a couple of weeks ago, and the first few chapters really drew me in, so I investigated the orginal fairy tale, and then I got on with the story. I was interested to see how close Hale adhered to the original tale, and where she deviated. By the end of the book, I have to say that I was very impressed. Hale kept very close to the original tale, even in the more odder aspects, such as the death of the princess's beloved talking horse, Falada, and the impalement of Falada's head upon the city wall.I also love how Hale inserted the use of three different types of magic into the novel. There are people are gifted with people-speaking, which allows them to manipulate and persuade people to their way of thinking, and some people have the gift of animal-speaking, which allows them to talk with animals. Then, even rarer, is nature-speaking, which allows a person to communicate with certain elements of nature.What pleased me just as much, however, was the novel's likable main character. Ani, the protagonist and the princess, is a very shy, timid, slightly coddled, easily cowed, but kind girl who has to learn to deal with the circumstances presented to her by her lady-in-waiting. By the end of the book she develops into a regal, confident, and more responsibile princess. Oh, character arcs! How I adore thee.When I was younger I had read a couple of Hale's other books, Princess Academy and Book of a Thousand Days, but I don't remember a lot about them. Reading The Goose Girl has inspired me to go read those two again and then to go see about Hale's other books. Shannon Hale has found a fan in me.more
They say timing is everything, and I feel that this must have been the exact right time for me to read The Goose Girl by Shannon Hale. I loved this book that was based on a favorite Grimm Brother’s fairy tale. Taking the original story and adding twists and detail, Shannon Hale has enhanced the original, and by populating it with great characters, vivid descriptions and a juicy plotline she has offered up a book that deserves it’s beloved status.This is a book that allows you to transport to another world, another time, and get lost in the pages. It is also a tale that has a definite modern outlook toward love and relationships. Yes, it is a romantic princess tale, but with a strong leading character that shapes her world, doesn’t settle and is able to find happiness even when alone. Of course, when she does find her prince, he is just about perfect, being someone who obviously will allow his wife both freedom and her own sense of power. Written in lyrical, descriptive prose, Hale has build a believable world where these strange and magical happenings actually ring true. An incredibly imaginative and appealing read that has placed Shannon Hale in my must-read-more-of category.more
I have meant to read "The Goose Girl" for a very long time. I adore fairy tales but I don't find myself reading them nearly enough. I recently had the opportunity to meet Shannon Hale (in a line a mile long) and I am now kicking myself because I didn't know just how amazing she was at the time. Now if I were to meet her, I would probably gush. The first chapter or two into the story, I was afraid maybe it wouldn't be for me. I wasn't sure I understood where the story was taking me. But from the start I knew I loved Ani, the crown princess of Kildenree. After her father, the King's death, Ani's mother send her to marry the prince of the neighboring country Bayern. I think it is an estimated six weeks of travel by horse from one place to another. Ani's travel companions include a group her Kildenree guards as well as Ani's maid in waiting Selia. But Selia has hatched a devious plot with many of the traveling guardsman. They ambush they other guardsman and murder them. Selia travels on to Bayern to take the place as the prince's betrothed. With some help along the way, Ani makes it to Bayern and is put to work as a goose girl.This story was fantastic. The characters are all so endearing and lovable, except the bad guys who are absolutely hateful. We see Ani grow up and mature before our eyes. She finds friendship in the poor people of Bayern. She finds joy in labor intensive work. She learns firsthand of the troubles that plague the Bayern people. I eagerly followed the tale from page to page. I wanted to see how Ani was able to find her way to the King and prayed she would find a way to convince him, against all odds, that she was the rightful princess. I also enjoyed the soft romance that built between Ani and a local aide to the prince. Their time together wasn't a significant portion of the book, but it was fun and ever so sweet. I really liked Gedric.I would say this book is appropriate for adults and older middle schoolers. There isn't bad language or intimate scenes but there is quite a bit of violence portrayed throughout the tale. Also the language is poetic in its prose and I think that it might be intimidating to younger readers. I must say that I was completely in love with this book and fully intend to read the next three adventures of Bayern.more
Hesitant doesn't even begin to cover how I felt about starting this novel. I read the original Goose Girl fairy tale not so very long ago and I'm not a fan. It's short, has a lot of random events going on, and I hated the main character for being such a pushover. So I was not expecting the amazingness that is Shannon Hale's version of The Goose Girl. It's suspenseful, entertaining, funny, and simply a good story.I love how Shannon Hale took the core story of the fairy tale and completely expanded upon it. There were many familiar events, but a lot of new twists and turns as well. I have to say, for me, the ending was entirely unexpected. This may be because I read the original fairy tale first, and I thought it would be closer to that ending, but Hale makes it a much better, happier ending, which I very much appreciated.Mostly, this book is about growing up and finding out who you are. It is a young adult novel, but I think that older people can most definitely relate. Ani has to get away from her family and her normal obligations to find out who she is for herself. And what she finds is that she's more like a princess that she thought she was. Besides reading about the adventure and the intrigue (which kept me on the edge of my seat throughout the entire story), I enjoyed seeing Ani grow up and become more confident in herself. And I loved reading about her making all sorts of new friends among the royal animal-keepers. Friendship is another good theme in this novel -- a theme that will never get old for me.In terms of audiobooks, Full Cast is the way to go. They deliver on their name -- there is a full cast for this audiobook, meaning each character has its own person delivering their lines. At first, this was jarring for me. Being used to having at the most two narrators for an audiobook, hearing all the different voices was a bit strange. However, I got used to it and fell in love with the format. Every character is guaranteed to have his or her own quirks and personality, because there are different narrators throughout. I liked the music at the end of the chapters, but I thought it went on overly long. Overall, however, I loved this audiobook. (It did win a 2007 Audi Award for Achievement in Production and was a Finalist in another category, so I'm not surprised it was good.)If you can't tell already, I love this book. Whether it's in print or in audio, if you haven't read it yet and are a fan of fairy tale retellings, or a good story in general, I recommend this for you.more
Take a girl who is to inherit the throne but lacks the pizazz of her mother--and thus, self-confidence. Add a jealous lady-in-waiting, and arranged marriage, and a coup of sorts. Princess Ani has to discover her own strength, and in so doing, becomes the queen her new country needs, while falling in love along the way.I love retold fairy tales, and Shannon Hale is right up there with Robin McKinley for taking a short story and giving novel treatment that doesn't feel like it's being forced to fill pages.A nice choice especially for girls, with a subtle reminder that it's what you are deep down that counts.more
I had the pleasure of reading Shannon Hale's The Goose Girl not too long ago. It is my second time through this book and I enjoyed it just as much as I had the first time. The book, a retelling of the story by the Brothers Grimm, is wonderful and made perfect for modern readers.Shannon Hale does a great job in retelling this story. Her plot, characters, and descriptions make it perfect for adults and young adults alike. I was enthralled with every page, and always wanted to know what would happen next. This is a great read! I highly reccommend this book to anyone who loves a good story!more
In the novel The Goose Girl by Shannon Hale, Crown Princess of Kildereen, Princess Anidori, struggles greatly to prepare herself for the reign of queen only to have her chances suddenly stripped away from her. Deceived and betrayed by her mother, Princess Anidori is sent away to Bayern to marry a prince she’s never met. On their journey to Bayern, Princess Anidori’s envious lady-in-waiting, Selia, conspires to murder the princess so that she may impersonate her as the crown princess. Princess Anidori escapes her death sentence and apprehensively finds her way to Bayern. While in Bayern, Princess Anidori becomes the goose girl, responsible for tending to the royal geese. After facing many deathly obstacles, Princess Anidori, followed by a band of Forest friends, finds her way to the king and to attempt to reveal her true identity to himand unveil Selia’s secret. I consider The Goose Girl to be one of excellence. Even though it is a lengthy one, I thought this novel was a real page turner from beginning to end. The characters, the events, the entire book, had a sense of realism to it. Hale’s use of vivid descriptions and details help the reader to easily visualize what is happening in the story, to become one with the characters, and to easily become lost in this fantasy.more
In The Goose Girl, Shannon Hale retells the Grimm fairy tale of the same name. Ani, princess of Kilendree, is sent by her mother to Bayern to marry the prince and restore peace between the countries. During the journey, Ani’s lady-in-waiting, Selia, along with many of the guards, attack Ani. She narrowly escapes and must disguise herself as a goose girl. Selia, meanwhile, takes Ani’s identity and promotes a war in order to cover her secret. Timid Ani must find the courage and trust necessary to take back what is hers and save both countries. This story is an exciting adventure mixed with talking animals, magic, and a little bit of romance. Readers familiar with the original Goose Girl will enjoy all the similarities. Though hard to get into at the beginning, the pace picks up and then remains entertaining until the end. I did not like Ani’s character at first, but she quickly grew on me. This may have been deliberate by Hale, as Ani starts the story a shy, awkward girl, disliked by her peers. As a goose girl, she learns to relate to people, however, and eventually make friends. This is a wonderful book for girls in sixth grade and up. It is highly recommended for the young adult section of public libraries, as well as for middle and high school libraries.more
While reading the Goose Girl, I felt I was in the middle of a fairy tale. I should admit right now, I am a very big fan of re-told fairy tales, doesn't matter if it's the 100th re-telling of Cinderella or an off-beat tale, like the twelve dancing princesses. If it's a re-told fairy tale, chances are pretty huge that I am going to read it.Shannon Hale's writing style leant perfectly to the retelling of a fairy tale. It was simple, but not to the point of being condescending. I liked that she didn't try to put in a bunch of awkward bells and whistles, but just let the story come naturally. Honestly, I think the simplicity sucked me in. After reading North and South By Elizabeth Gaskell, I needed something with less nuance (wouldn't want my brain to explode), this was the perfect book for that.In case you can't tell, I really loved this book. I have to say, I cared so much about the main character, Ani, that I wound up becoming very enraged at certain parts. Let's just say I don't like when certain characters don't get their just desserts. I'm not about to give away spoilers, but I couldn't stop turning the pages because I wanted justice to be done. I mean, I guess I knew what was going to happen, since I had read the spoil-tastic amazon review, but I sort of forgot all of that and let myself be transported to Bayern. Personally, I find that to be a great standard to judge a book by. If I can get so into a book that I forget it's a hot day in hell, NY, then to me, that is a fantastic book.more
What would you do if your lady-in-waiting was jealous of you and wanted to steal your identity?Princess Anidori-Kildara Talianna Islee, Crown Princess of Kildenree (aka Ani) was never the poster child for being a Princess. Ani wanted to hang out with the swans, horses and other animals but her mother the Queen banned her from seeing them. After her father, the King, suddenly dies and her life takes a unexpected turn. She is told she is being shipped off to the ends of the kingdom to marry and Ani's life gets flipped upside down- literally. Cute story! I couldn't put it down and read it in a day! Great read for young or old (like me!)!!more
This is a wonderful retelling of the Goose Girl fairy tale. The Goose Girl, while not good with people-speak, learns to communicate with the animals and the wind, overcomes adversity, and lives happily everafter! What more could you ask for?more
As of right now, 6,990 fans have given The Goose Girl the top 5-star rating, and only 62 have given it a 1-star. I guess I'm going to be #6,991, because I obviously have found a new treasure :DD This is the first book I've read since finishing the epic saga The Bridei Chronicles, and I was relieved to have something less perplexing. I generally love fairy-tale retellings, as long as they dont go too "realistic," which is pretty much the modern euphemism for "trashy." I'd actually forgotten about the "Goose Girl" tale, as it never stuck out to me as one of the Grimms' major stories, but I found this book to be a fun but substantial read. I will say, I could have used more character development. I like my villains to be explained, and I kept wondering as to why the villains in this story (including a backstabbing "frenemy" who could very well have been Regina George's ancestor) went to the trouble of doing their deeds. Jealousy? Is that it? The perspective followed the main character, Ani/Isi, all throughout and I could have done with a shift to some other characters, just so I could get a better understanding of what they were going through. I really liked Shannon Hale's characters, but on the other hand of that compliment is a bit of a complaint, because I didnt really feel that they were as developed as they could have been. I especially liked Geric, and I agree with lots of other reviewers that he should have had more scenes. But Shannon Hale deserves an award (okay, she deserves ANOTHER award) just for writing a clean, sweet romance. I mean, maybe I read between the lines too much, but I was picking up on some very very decent messages about romance, and that's always a plus :D So if you like YA books where both characters have vice-like behavior, this book is NOT for you :P Cant wait to start Enna Burning. THANK YOU for recommending it, RAE!more
Just finished this book...and stayed up late to do so because it was that good. The Goose Girl, Ani or Isi--one in the same---she is the "Crown Princess" who was taught in her primary years by her aunt how to converse with animals and the aunt also eludes to the long lost language of the wind and earth. Perceived as a weakness and abnormal, Ani must hide her skill and try to emulate her future role as ruler of her land. In a blunt and war-avoiding move, her mother arranges for her to marry the prince of the "possible" enemy country. So Ani relinquishes her rights the crown and consents to her mother's plan; off she begins her nearly 4 month journey. Her entourage includes loyal guards and many soldiers and also her lady-in-waiting. Traveling in unknown lands in rugged terrain brings chaos and turmoil to the plot. No more can be said without giving so much away. Except....her title as Goose Girl is a journey that brings solitude and self-realization that strengthen her beyond measure. Hale's ability to take the reader (in this case, me) on an unpredictable journey that created a dynamic character set in the "royal" period with a hint of the fairytale realm minced in with a little magic WAS a welcome to my eyes! Hence the beginning attribute about staying up all night to finish. This was fresh plot with fully developed characters with a writing style that was not laborious and tedious. Hale has accomplished much with her writing. More companion books follow some characters--but I have yet to read them. I am savoring the GOOD READ. Her writing is similar to George's Sun and Moon, Ice and Snow.more
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