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Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite
The Prince and the Puppet Thief is a work of fiction in the fairytale genre. It is aimed at young adults and was penned by Justin Arnold. The book tells the story of Simon, the son of a fairytale villain who has wound up in the dungeon for what he hopes will be the last time. When Prince Marco becomes smitten with him, the two hatch a plan for Simon to rescue the damsel in distress Marco is destined for. But just as the Prince wasn’t looking for a Princess, Princess Isobel has been hoping for her handmaiden to come to her rescue.
This book was a joyful delight to read from start to finish. Taking all the trappings of the heteronormative classic fairytale and giving it a thoroughly modern LGBTQ+ makeover leaves us with this charming story with all of the charm and whimsy in the world at its fingertips. Justin Arnold is an enchanting storyteller whose prose is fun to read. The characters were excellently considered and presented, each using our expectations of the fairy tale tropes to be playfully subversive and keep readers on their toes. All in all, this is a brilliant story that I immediately wanted to share. A veritable tonic to a bad day of watching the news, this book charms you with its fantasy world and engages you with its cast of fun characters who all riff on the fairytale stock characters we remember from childhood. The Prince and The Puppet Thief is an absolute must-read.