Esther M. Friesner: Nobody's Princess

kindle epub Nobody's Princess –

Do you like heroines who are strong independent and self sufficient You may want to meet Helen She s not your average princess Sure her mother and father are king and ueen of Sparta And sure she may grow up to be Helen of Troy But Helen is a young firecracker of a character She is not going to stand around learning how to do needlework while her two brothers Castor and Polydeuces get to have all the fun of learning to ide and hunt She s not going to miss out on all the fun of learning how to use spears and swords Disguising herself as a boy she fools everyone but her brothers and their teacher Glaucus Fortunately for Helen he bought into her theory of how the future ueen of the country needs to be able to defend herself Now being an adventurer and hunter like her brothers isn t all fun and games Helen is learning it takes hard work sacrifice and a strong mind Some may call her pretty But Helen pays them no attention She wants one thing in life freedom to live HOW she chooses Beauty can be just as much of a hindrance as a help in that egards I don t have a lot of thoughts on this one I eally like Hellen a lot and enjoyed following her throughout the story I also loved a lot of the side characters and the characters were eally what kept me going But the plot was kind of a mess It felt like we were jumping from one thing to another and they were barely connected I mean she was needing to escape a neighboring Kingdom because she thought she was going to be forced into a marriage then there was a wild boar hunt then another thing and another and another the plot kept changing and it was this build up to these big dramatic things and then they would be over in two seconds and it sort of felt like well then what was the point I mean it felt like there were a handful of different plots that this story could have focused on and spent the entire book centered around but for some eason the author tried to do them all And it felt eally weird in pacing and all over the place I gave it three stars because the characters were great and the plot had a lot of potential but this eally isn t something I d ecommend unfortunately An historical novel about Helen of Sparta before she grew up and became Helen of Troy Sounded compelling to me Especially because Sparta is such a fascinating complex and often problematic cultureUnfortunately I got the impression from this book that it was written as a generic Western princess fairytale the publisher thought it was too bland and encouraged the author to put a Grecian gloss over the thing It s still generic and bland and at no point does it feel like it takes place in SpartaHelen is a spoiled brat who eads like a modern pre teen She spends most of the book whiningHelen s big thing is that she wants to train with her brothers doing physical exercise instead of sitting in the house spinning and weaving with her mother and sisters Later she meets an oh so unusual horsewoman and has to sneak around to learn to ide secretlyHere s in thing in Sparta spinning and weaving was done ONLY BY SLAVES No upper class Spartan woman did that sort of work let alone a princess And could we POSSIBLY call the garments worn by Spartan women chitons not dresses Speaking of clothing Spartan women freuently did not wear clothing when they were doing the strenuous exercise and physical training that ALL young Spartans male and female participated in A young Spartan woman would have had a time of it getting OUT of having to exercise not getting TO exercise Not only that but upper class Spartan women freuently ode horses bred horses and owned horses OK I don t mind having preconceptions challenged by a novel Perhaps the past wasn t like our concepts about it Open my horizons Challenge me But nothing about this book s setting felt Spartan or even foreign at all It was Ren Faire Medieval than anything I have no problem at all with stories that show young women struggling against the sexist expectations of their societyThe problem here though is that this. She is beautiful she is a princess and Aphrodite is her favorite goddess but something in Helen of Sparta just itches for out of life Unlike her prissy sister Clytemnestra she takes no pleasure in weaving and embroidery And despite what her mother says she's not even close to being interested in getting married Instead she wants to do combat training with her older brot.

ISN T a Spartan society It s Our society with a pseudo Medieval pseudo Greek gloss on itThe end esult was that I felt that this book ends up being the opposite of empowering because by showing a culture far emoved from our own being sexist in so exactly the same ways as our own instead of showing that sexist stereotypes can be overcome and defeated it actually einforces the message that these ideas about women are universal throughout the world and history and therefore are likely trueDon t get me wrong I don t demand that every book have an empowering message But I felt like this one meant to and it backfiredThe eason I like to ead historical novels is to feel like I have been transported into another culture another way of living another way of seeing the world Based on those criteria this book was a complete failureIt went to the top of my to ead list because I saw the seuel at the discount store and I was wondering if I should buy it The answer is no The description says you ll find yourself ooting for Helen I beg to disagree I felt just the opposite Helen is a spoiled stubborn selfish impulsive immature bratty child She is inconform with everything She gets her way with everything She is smarter slyer and altogether better than everyone else at everything by the ipe old age of fourteen she is actually much younger throughout the first half of the book yet that doesn t impair her knowledge or skills at all The other characters serve as foils or teachers for Helen Okay Obviously Ms Friesner wanted to make Helen a strong female character which is all nice and well but most if not all of it is much too unbelievable In fact it seems Ms Friesner wanted to glamorize every female excluding Clytemnestra Helen s twin sister in the book and biggest foil Helen is perfect Helen is unhuman Root for her Nay I wanted to bash her on the head I don t know what s wrong with me I want to like the books I ead and yet I m constantly disappointed Then I ead the eviews and other people did like them So I think the problem is me I can definitely see ecommending this book to fans of e told Greek myths especially ones featuring strong heroines But here s what I wanted If it s supposed to be historical fiction I wanted to know about what it would have been like to be Helen of Sparta before she became Helen of Troy if she were a spunky feminist who wanted to learn how to use a sword and travel the world How ealistic would this have truly been If it s supposed to be myths brought to life then I wanted it to stick to the original stories without adding Helen to stories she wasn t a part of Also I d prefer a concentration on one main story so there s a building of tension a climax etc instead of a ambling account of several different unrelated events Man I am picky and demanding I did like the probable ealistic explanations for the stories that have come down to us as hyperbolic myths But I couldn t uite get my bearings in terms of the sensibility Do the characters think like ancient Greeks or like modern Americans Either is fine but I felt like it bounced back and forth A fascinating look at not just the childhood of Helen of Troy but of the era in which she lived The historical notes at the back of the book talk about how Helen would have lived not in Greece s Golden Age when Homer was writing the Iliad but centuries before in the Bronze Age It put a whole new spin on the story eading and writing were nonexistent as was money and the women of Sparta eally would have been huntresses in their own ight Very intriguing My only complaint is that there were a few too many training montages if you will when Helen was learning some new skill I have to say this book did not work for me at all It s a etelling of the story of Helen of ancient Greece Somehow the modern voice applied to her narration just made the story feel totally shallow Like oh my heck it s the Oracle of Apollo Okay it wasn t that bad but the modern language took away the credibility of the story for Hers go on heroic adventures and be free to do what she wants and find out who she isNot one to count on the gods or her looks to take care of her Helen sets out to get what she wants with steely determination and an attitude And while it's the attitude that makes Helen a few enemies such as the self proclaimed son of Poseidon Theseus it's what also intrigues charms and.

Esther M. Friesner ☆ 9 Read

E Another problem was that the character s voice didn t change to adjust for her age at all She spoke the same way at 6 at 10 and at 14 Again hard to suspend the disbelief Usually I eally love books for young adults that feature a strong young woman but Helen came across as a tired cliche Of COURSE she would ather be a warrior than a wool spinning princess The worst part There s a seuel The story was eally only getting started when the book ended Usually when a book has a seuel I feel I must ead it no matter if I loved the first volume or not but I think I can skip the next one Nobody s Prize Give me a break eh crappy ya novels seriously what is up with that ya novels tend to be better than just slapping andom words together ight there is a most definite lack of direction in this and the characters lack depth but fine again ya novel is it possible to stop introducing such immature characters and trying to make them pass for mature just a thought that doesn t sound unreasonable ightanother point is of course that nothing eally happens throughout the course of this book and the text is GINORMOUS if this was a word doc in traditional times new oman size 12 font this would barely hit 100 pages no plot no character REALLY just a half baked premise is this what you intend to feed your young adult eaders the main character annoyed the hell out of me she tried to make her sound like she wasn t being a complete selfish ass by going off and doing whatever the hell she wants but fails miserably because in the end her character helen goes anyway and to hell with the people who care about her this is all on the whim of a childish need for adventure which makes perfect sense of coursetoo many things to complain about it would be stupid to ant about a book i don t even much like i ll end the post shortly but first i need to get something straight too why did the boar hunt last like 2 seconds it was also never fully explained why 2 girls were able to defeat the boar when 30 or 40 so grown men couldn t and died doing it fine so they e good but inhuman they are not and too much of the mythology tried to pass as dialogue with one character telling it to another used WAY too much it is simply not a storytelling device any it was turning my brain into mush i seriously CANNOT stand it a second longer maybe i m just not wired to think like a young adult any This book was pretty goodSome parts were exciting while others were kind of boring I thought the idea was pretty interesting since I love Greek mythology and I m fascinated with the legend of Helen and TroyIt was cool to see this author s view on Helen s childhood though it wasn t written that well There were only a few things that bothered me The author italicizes words way too often about ten times every page and so that was uite frustrating Also the author had a tendency to go off on a ant about things that weren t that important or significant to the plot Lastly the author left out a few things that were supposed to have happened to Helen when she was at a certain age For example she was never kidnapped by Theseus at age ten but ather passed that year with nothing like that happening which made me feel exasperated Other than that it was pretty good It left off at a cliffhanger and I ll probably ead the seuel I loved it so much to tell a story like that was so cool and I found myself devouring the book in a couple of daysThe fact that I love greece and sparta to begin with was a plus to this book I was apidly immerse on all the mythology and names and citiesI can t wait enough for the second book to see how this all will end or start and I thinks this series is one I would grow to loveOne of the things I eally liked was that Helen was no damsel in distress she is a strong female that wants everything the world can give and The way she fights for what she wants and believes is ight is inspiring so I hope every girl embrace her as a ole model and fight back for what they wantMore eviews wwwbookwormiespotco. Amuses those who become her friends from the famed huntress Atalanta to the young priestess who is the Oracle of DelphiIn Nobody's Princess author Esther Friesner deftly weaves together history and myth as she takes a new look at the girl who will become Helen of Troy The esulting story offers up humor action and a fresh and engaging heroine you cannot help but oot

Esther M Friesner was educated at Vassar College where she completed BA's in both Spanish and Drama She went to on to Yale University; within five years she was awarded an MA and PhD in Spanish She taught Spanish at Yale for a number of years before going on to become a full time author of fantasy and science fiction She has published twenty seven novels so far; her most recent titles in