Princess Ben:
being a wholly truthful account of her various discoveries and misadventures, recounted to the best of her recollection, in four parts

by Catherine Gilbert Murdock

Summary: Princess Ben's life is turned upside down when her parents are killed, and she is left in the hands of her cold, callous aunt, Queen Sophia. The queen is determined to turn Benevolence into marrying material, so the young princess must endure grueling etiquette training. Things change, however, when she discovers a hidden room in her tower and an enchanted book of spells. Ben begins teaching herself magic, and then finds herself on a quest to save her country that no one would have expected.
Thoughts: This is a charming fantasy staring an unlikely heroine. The novel has all the classic elements of a fairy tale - medieval setting, adversity, magic, a handsome prince, and romance. It is a completely different novel from Ms. Murdock's Dairy Queen and The Off Season, but equally well-written.

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