Entwined by Heather Dixon

entwinedEntwined is a teen/YA novel by Heather Dixon, based off of the Grimm Fairy Tale of the Twelve Dancing Princesses. The main character is Princess Azalea, the eldest of twelve royal sisters who all love to dance. When their beloved mother dies, their stoic father – the king – prohibits the girls from dancing during the year of mourning. But their old palace contains deep magic, and the princesses discover an enchanted silver forest within the walls where they can dance each night, hosted by a mysterious magician called the Keeper.

However, the fantasy/magic part of the story isn’t what made this novel so good. It was the relationships and personalities of each of the twelve sisters, the delightful humor in the writing, and all of the heartwarming romantic subplots with their unique gentlemen suitors that kept me swiping the e-pages. This is also a beautiful father-daughters story, about an aloof ruler transforming into a loving parent. I almost feel as though all the fantasy aspects could’ve been taken out of this book, and it still would make a terrific little regency or Victorian coming-of-age romance. But the magical elements added an interesting backdrop – and, of course, life-threatening peril! (Indeed, the end is action-packed.)

If you like an old-fashioned, heartwarming story about a close-knit family, reminiscent of “Meet Me in St. Louis” or “The Sound of Music,” skillfully written and blended with fairy tale magic, regency-style romance, and tons of humor and dancing, then I recommend Entwined!

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