Pub Date: 04/15/2010
To Andrea, the life of a princess is not a dream; it’s tedious and stifling. But the certainties of her life, both good and bad, are thrown into chaos when she accidentally travels to an alternative world, from a cave on a forbidden beach in her family’s kingdom to the warm and carefree life of Southern California.
Then a careless visit to the cave results in terrible consequences: a brewing war between kingdoms, her sister’s love for the wrong man, Andrea’s own conflicted feelings for an enemy leader, and dark family secrets exposed.
Andrea needs to act to resolve problems which she helped to create, and she faces many difficult choices, torn between duty and desire on so many levels.
Readers will enjoy the mix of traditional elements of the fantasy genre, with fresh ideas and a look at our culture through the eyes of a stranger.
Andrea is a very strong willed young woman who doesn’t actually want to live her life as a princess or as a lady in her father’s court. She would prefer to be in the middle of a fight or in her father’s army.
But when her father forbids her fulfilling her dreams as a squire, Andrea discovers a doorway into another world that only legends of old have foretold. When she stumbles through the doorway she finds herself in the unknown lands of modern day California. There she finds family she never knew she had, and friendships that she never dreamt of.
When Andrea finds herself once again accidentally tumbling through the doorway between the two different worlds, not only does she not want to be there, but she also has a native Californian in tow with her. And her fatal actions have consequences for her kingdom, which sends a chain of events snowballing out of her control.
After reading the premise of this novel, I was waiting and waiting for Andrea to find the secret doorway between the worlds. It took a while for this story to build up to that point, and I initially found myself getting frustrated with the opening pace. Once Andrea did get to that point, I found it very hard to put this book down.
I loved how strong willed Andrea was, even though she can be a little childish in her manner sometimes.
Andrea is a strategist, but no matter how whimsical her decisions are at the time, she goes gallivanting off and puts her plans into action without thinking of the detrimental consequences that her decisions will have on her kingdom or the people close to her.
My only criticism would be that the author did jump a little, and I sometimes found myself getting slightly lost, but in the end I just ignored it and went with the flow of the story.
I am going to rate this novel 3 stars out of 5 because while I felt that this book was actually quite a good read, it did take a while to get into it. I even contemplated putting the book down in those first pages, but I am glad that I persisted. I enjoyed the characters and the individualism of all of the sub characters in the story. I also really loved the Spanish history that was woven into the pages.