The Kingdom of Grape

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The Kingdom of Grape

Last Free on: 5th Nov 20
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...A fun, light, story that should give younger children something to read....

Donnie Drake lives in the land of Grape and is the King’s messenger delivering letters through the town he lives in. He is in love with Princess Jane. But she is betrothed to the Duke of Red, whose father saved the land during a civil war. However, the Duke of Red is an evil man and Jane does not love him. Things change one day, when Donnie saves the life of Lady Gates, the keeper of the country and the Princess finds out who he is. But after a chance encounter with the Duke of Red, she is forced to agree to marry the Duke in return for sparing the life of Donnie. But the Duke’s scheme makes it’s way back to the ailing king and they put together a plan to set things right. But this doesn’t count the machinations of Jane’s younger brother, Peter, who also wants the throne for himself.

This is a light, whimsical, children’s story that spins a simple tale. The plot is fairly simple, but it is engaging and quickly sets up the characters and the stakes they are playing for. The story moves quickly from scene to scene, but sometimes feels a little underwhelming in what is going on, as a little more description in each scene would have helped. Each of the characters plays their part, from brave Donnie and Jane, to the evil Duke of Red. What is interesting is the number of times the lead hero is rescued in one way or another through the book instead of carrying out all the rescuing. It’s a pleasant change to see that all the people have a chance to be heroic.

There are one or two black and white illustrations at the end of each chapter, showing one of the scenes, which sometimes throws the formatting off, but are a pleasing addition to the book. In general the formatting and layout is fine, and I didn’t notice any major spelling or grammar errors through the book. The only complaint I would have is that the book is not very challenging in any way, the story sometimes tries to be a little darker but doesn’t feel like it engages in any consequences of the events.

Overall, it’s a fun, light, story that should give younger children something to read.

Rating: 4
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