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Reviewed by Liz Konkel for Readers' Favorite
The Jabberwocky Princess by Cece Louise is book two in the Forest Tales series and can be read as a standalone. Kainda isn't like the other maids. Her father was a monster hunter that disappeared, leaving behind several dead knights. Like her father before her, Kainda longs to have her own adventures and receives her opportunity when the king of Fernshire has a monster problem. A dragon is terrorizing the kingdom and, as a result, the king has declared that whoever slays the monster will receive the princess's hand in marriage. Prince Ander of Galesmore seeks Kainda's help in slaying the monster and with her best friend accompanying them, they set off in search of the Jabberwock. As she faces her own journey, Opal struggles with her duty as a princess, rebels against her father's wishes, and perhaps even finds love in an unexpected place in the process.
Kainda teams up with Prince Ander when he enlists her into the hunt, which provides several moments between the two that are enjoyable, humorous, and filled with chemistry. The dynamic between Kainda and Ander is filled with equal parts banter and challenge as they develop a certain amount of respect for each other. Rebellion is at the heart of the story and is seen in how Kainda rebels against the damsel stereotype, Ander is rebelling through his philandering ways, and Opal is far from being a silent princess. Both women break stereotypes within this fairy tale setting by being outspoken and headstrong. Perspective is split between Kainda and Opal with their journeys in self, duty, and love woven together and striking a balance with one another. Cece Louise has created two well-rounded young women that are similar in their desire to break free while different in the ways that they're bold. Based on the poem by Lewis Carroll, The Jabberwocky Princess weaves a tale about two outspoken women in journeys that are filled with love, bravery, self, duty, and a creature that can drive people to madness.