{Review & e-reader Giveaway!} THE HERO'S GUIDE TO SAVING YOUR KINGDOM by Christopher Healy

Walden Pond Press is hosting a blog tour from April 30th to May 14th, with a lot of fun stops planned!

They're also GIVING AWAY an e-reader full of books that any prince--or princess--would be happy to own:

Tweet for Princes! To celebrate the publication of The Hero's Guide to Saving Your Kingdom by Christopher Healy (5/1/12), Walden Pond Press is giving away an e-reader of the winner's choice AND a selection of Princes Liam, Gustav, Frederic, and Duncan's favorite e-books!

The winner may select any e-reader ranging from the Nook to the Nook Tablet 8GB or the Kindle to the Kindle Fire.TO ENTER: FOLLOW @WaldenPondPress on Twitter (www.twitter.com/waldenpondpress) and TWEET the following message:

RT @waldenpondpress: Celebrate #HerosGuide to Saving Your Kingdom & WIN an e-reader w/the heroes’ fave books! RT 2 ENT http://ow.ly/avE8z

Also, have you heard yesterday's AMAZING news?  Fox Animation has optioned HERO'S GUIDE and will most likely be turning it into an animated movie.  It's funny, because as I was reading this, I thought it would make a great movie!

I was honored to recently feature a Story Excerpt and Illustration Reveal for Walden Pond Press' latest release, THE HERO'S GUIDE TO SAVING YOUR KINGDOM.

I also interviewed Todd Harris, the book's illustrator, during Fairy Tale Fortnight!

Plus, Walden Pond Press has shared an audio excerpt to get you even more excited: -->

Hopefully all of these tidbits already have you excited about HERO'S GUIDE, but if you're still unconvinced, check out my review of this uproarious new novel!


O P E N I N G   H O O K:

PRINCE CHARMING IS AFRAID OF OLD LADIES.  Didn't know that, did you?

Don't worry.  There's a lot you don't know about Prince Charming: Prince Charming has no idea how to use a sword; Prince Charming has no patience for dwarfs; Prince Charming has an irrational hatred of capes.

Some of you may not even realize that there's more than one Prince Charming.  And that none of them are actually named Charming. 
(pg. 1, US ARC Edition)


From the get-go, THE HERO'S GUIDE TO SAVING YOUR KINGDOM separates itself from the rest of the pack thanks to author Christopher Healy's clear, unique storytelling abilities.  HERO'S GUIDE is crammed with action, adventure, excitement, and mayhem, not to mention littered with hilarity.  The book features an omniscient narrator who foreshadows and explains in a way sure to catch a reader's interest.  At times, I envisioned the voice to be the narrator from Disney's WINNIE THE POOH; at other times, I imagined the Narrator from the fairy tale musical INTO THE WOODS.  Every chapter heading cleverly begins with something about Prince Charming, but you never which Prince Charming is being mentioned.  That's sort of the point, though, because the four princes in HERO'S GUIDE aren't named Prince Charming, even though bards have demoted them to such roles in their own tales.

The four princes making up what they call the League of Princes are Prince Liam (Sleeping Beauty's Prince Charming), Prince Frederic (Cinderella's Prince Charming), Prince Duncan (Snow White's Prince Charming), and Prince Gustav (Rapunzel's Prince Charming).  The girls became famous in the tales as they swept through the land, while the princes were demoted to a mere "Prince Charming."  And Happily Ever After isn't what you expect, either.  Sleeping Beauty, for example, is horribly vain and not fun to be around.  Cinderella, on the other hand, is one of my favorite characters in the entire book.  She's a spit-fire.  She didn't escape life with her stepmother and stepsisters only to be holed up in a castle for the rest of her life.  She wants adventure, she needs to explore.  She goes off on a journey and Prince Frederic, who has been sheltered his entire life, goes off to find her.  Along the way, he meets his merry band of Prince Charmings, and together they encounter trolls and dragons and Bandit Kings intent on destroying them creating a fun, fast-paced adventure sure to please all ages, especially upon discovering a dastardly witch's plot to steal the land's bards and slaughter any hero who comes to save the day.

HERO'S GUIDE is fun and uproarious, full of laughter throughout.  It's delightful and innovative, full of twists and turns and scenarios that are completely unexpected as Healy turns the fairy tales we know and love on their heads and spins them around like an out-of-control top.  At times, elements can be completely out there, but for the most part, everything works well together.  HERO'S GUIDE is the first in a series, and while this debut offering is a stand-alone with no cliffhanger and a firm, endearing resolution, it will be exciting to re-visit Healy's world and see what he has to offer us next.  Plus, I'm really hoping that movie option with Fox Animation goes through.  I really do think it will make a great movie!!
C O V E R   D E S I G N:

I love illustrated covers.  I really like the way this cover's design has a "book feel" to it, with the red leather covering the image:

Additionally, Todd Harris has created a stunning image on its own:

Click both images to see larger ones (And they're both Copyright Todd Harris!)

Even better?  This isn't all we see of the talented designer, whose images grace the book's pages.  There was an Excerpt and Illustration tour.  I also interviewed Todd Harris last week, and his responses are well worth checking out if you're enjoying the above images!

I love the way he illustrated each of the characters, and came to know who was supposed to be who by reading the book.  I really hope that Fox Animation keeps Todd Harris' character designs!

I really like the fact that so many major events in the book are featured on the cover, from the dragon to the troll back near the castle to the witch flying on her broomstick.  I also loved the small detail to several of the princes and princesses (Though I won't name names so that you too can be surprised and delighted the way I was!)

This cover is gorgeous and I can't wait to see another book written by Christopher Healy with designs by Todd Harris.  Walden Pond Press packaged this one well!

O F F I C I A L   I N F O:

Author: Christopher Healy
Release Date: Out May 01, 2012
Publisher: Walden Pond Press/HarperCollins
Received: Received for Review


Enter a world where everything, even our classic fairy tales, is not at all what it seems.

Prince Liam. Prince Frederic. Prince Duncan. Prince Gustav. You've never head of them, have you? These are the princes who saved Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, Snow White, and Rapunzel, respectively, and yet, thanks to those lousy bards who wrote the tales, you likely know them only as "Prince Charming." But all of this is about to change...

Rejected by their princesses and cast out of their castles, Liam, Frederic, Duncan, and Guztav stumble upon an evil plot that could endanger each of their kingdoms. Now it's up to them to triumph over their various shortcomings, take on trolls, bandits, dragons, witches, and other associated terrors to becom the heroes no one ever thought they could be.

This title is the first in a series about the adventures of Liam, Frederic, Duncan, and Gustav. The second title is due out in 2013.


  1. SO fun! I totally need to get this one read. I keep holding it & waiting... :P (I still have a few days before my review HAS to go live... ;P)

    But yes. It looks like SO Much fun! :D

  2. I LOVED this book. It was so hard to put in words exactly how I felt while reading.

    I am so glad to hear that it might become a movie. I was thinking it would be an epic movie that I would own in my DVD collection forever! We can always sniff a great book to movie prototype, eh?

  3. Small Review recommended I read this one. I've been looking forward to it ever since. In fact, I told my sister it would make a great read aloud for her youngest son, who hasn't really developed a love for books yet and loves to laugh. Maybe this will be "that book".


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