review: “nobody’s prize” June 23, 2009Posted by Katie in reviews.
Tags: 48 hour book challenge, historical fiction, series
Nobody’s Prize by Esther Friesner.
Random House // Paperback // 336 pages.
Reviewed from purchased copy.
Helen of Sparta is back in this sequel to “Nobody’s Princess.” Her brothers are all set on leaving her behind as they set off to find the Golden Fleece, but Helen isn’t about to let them get away with that. She disguises herself as a boy, with the help of her friend Milo, and climbs aboard the vessel, ducking her brothers the whole way. A whole slew of problems await Helen during and after the voyage on the Argo!
Okay, first of all, I’ve got to say that I don’t necessarily believe that Helen of Troy could possibly hide out as a boy! You’ve got to be kidding me. And the second thing that I’ve got to admit is that I had a really hard time getting into this story and staying into it. I don’t know if it’s because it was after a long weekend of reading, but I wound up reading two books between starting and finishing this one. I had to keep pausing and read one of the other books.
It felt like a lot of the action in this book was smashed in and many of the subplots and twists didn’t get the screen time that I wanted them to. I really believe that this could have easily been a trilogy instead of a pair of books. I was also disappointed that this book didn’t take us all the way up to Helen becoming Helen of Troy. I felt that it ended abruptly and I wanted to see the story brought to the point where history takes over.
However, one of the strengths of this series is that was well researched and developed. I loved that Friesner put a historic note at the end of each of these novels. That is the way historical fiction should be treated.
I would pick up a third Helen book if it were published, but I don’t think I would buy it.