Cover image for The princess test
The princess test
Levine, Gail Carson.
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : HarperCollinsPublishers, [1999]

Physical Description:
91 pages : illustrations ; 19 cm
In this humorous retelling of Hans Christian Andersen's "The Princess and the Pea, " Lorelei must pass many difficult tests in order to prove that she is a true princess and win the hand of Prince Nicholas.
General Note:
"The princess tales."
Reading Level:
480 Lexile.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR MG 4.0 1.0 41124.

Reading Counts RC 3-5 5.5 4 Quiz: 21574 Guided reading level: P.

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
X Juvenile Fiction Open Shelf
X Juvenile Fiction Open Shelf

On Order



Gail Carson Levine charmed the world with Ella Enchanted, her spirited retelling of the Cinderella story. Now this award-winning author turns her attention to two more classic fairy tales, and deftly turns them upside down and inside out with her trademark wit and hilarity.

In The Fairy's Mistake, two very different sisters have two very different encounters with the fairy Ethelinda. Rosella is kind and helpful. Her reward: Jewels and gems tumble out of her mouth whenever she speaks. Myrtle is rude and spiteful. Her punishment: Bugs and vipers slither out of her mouth. The fairy Ethelinda feels she's meted out justice just right--until she discovers Rosella has been locked up by a greedy prince and Myrtle is having the time of her life!

In The Princess Test, King Humphrey has decided its time for his son, Prince Nicholas, to marry. But he must make sure the bride is a real princess. So he devises a series of princess tests, designed to weed out the phonies and the fakes. Meanwhile, Nicholas has fallen in love with Lorelei, a mere blacksmith's daughter. She's no princess, but he wants to marry her all the same--but how will she ever pass the terrible tests?

In these first two delightfully entertaining, laugh-out-loud Princess Tales, Gail Levine gently spoofs the notion that fairies are always right and that tests can never prove a persons worth, but holds fast to the notion that true love will always win in the end.

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Gr. 3^-6. Levine follows her splendid reworking of the Cinderella story, Ella Enchanted (1997), with Princess Tales, two much shorter fairy tale rewrites. In The Fairy's Mistake, which is based on the French folktale "Toads and Diamonds," Ethelinda the fairy is very disappointed when her reward to a nice sister, and her punishment to a nasty one, don't work out as she hoped: the nasty sister finds that threatening people with the bugs and vermin that come out of her mouth is useful; and the kind Rosella's pearls and jewels leave her at the mercy of the greedy. In The Princess Test, a retelling of Hans Christian Andersen's "The Princess and the Pea," a blacksmith's daughter turns out to be even fussier and more delicate than a princess. Although neither story achieves the depth and elegance of Ella, both offer a pleasantly off-kilter spin on old favorites, and their lively style makes them excellent choices for reading aloud. Illustrations by Mark Elliott break up the text. --Susan Dove Lempke

School Library Journal Review

Gr 3-6-Two novellas that are grounded in well-known tales and set in the magical kingdom of Biddle. The Fairy's Mistake is a play on "Toads and Diamonds," a story from Perrault about gifts given by a witch to two sisters, one kind and the other unkind. The Princess Test is based on Hans Christian Andersen's "The Princess and the Pea." Illustrated with full-page pen-and-ink drawings, both retellings are delightfully lighthearted, with little doubt that good will ultimately triumph over evil. There is a rich use of language and spirited characters, especially the females. Although "The Princess Tales" lack the complexity of plot and fantastical invention found in Levine's Ella Enchanted (HarperCollins, 1997), they make a nice addition to the genre of novels based on and yet departing from traditional tales. Although their short length and sly humor would make the books appeal to reluctant readers, the difficult font makes it hard to recommend them to that audience.-Carol A. Edwards, Sonoma County Library, Santa Rosa, CA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.