I decided to read the other fairy tale retelling from Alex Flinn, A Kiss In Time. This time she takes on Sleeping Beauty. Jack is bored with his trip to Europe. He is sure his parents just sent him to get him out of the way. He and his friend, Travis, decide to ditch the tour and do some sightseeing on their own. They come across a thick wood that hides an old fashioned kingdom. All the people are asleep. When they come across Talia, Jack finds her so beautiful he gives her a kiss. When she and the entire kingdom awake, they are in for a bunch of trouble. Jack is thrown in the dungeon. Talia helps him escape as long as he takes her with him. So Jack takes her home to Miami. Talia hopes that he will be her true love. All the while the evil witch is stalking her.
It is fun to watch Talia marvel at the modern world. Jack develops from a party boy to a pretty good guy. Flinn twists how modern love fits into the fairy tale. She does a good job showing how love is more complicated than black and white. Jack and Talia’s feeling for each other are not just about looks. I didn’t like this one as much as Cloaked. The characters were not as rich and colorful, but it was still fun to read.
Ideas for discussing with teens:
Talk about how a princess would survive in modern times.
Talk about facing your dragon. What is the thing that scares or intimidates you the most?
Talk about Jack’s relationship with his parents. What about Talia’s relationship. How protective is too protective?
Compare this book with the Sleeping Beauty story you remember.
Talk about falling in love. What appeals to them, besides looks?
What kind of modern conveniences can they live without? What can’t they live without?
Talk about body image from the past vs. now. Why would the modeling agency send her away? What does that say about us now?