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The Princess of the Chalet School by Elinor…

The Princess of the Chalet School (1927)

by Elinor M. Brent-Dyer

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This is my favourite so far (I'm reading them in order), perhaps because I'm getting used to its being more an adventure series than a school series. I also really enjoyed the plot, however predictable, and the use the girls make of their new survival/wilderness skills learned while trying to get more badges (I don't want to spoil here, but the last adventure Joey has is a good example of that). I feel that the whole Guiding aspect of the book was handled very badly, though, seeing as it was just dropped on us as a fait accompli - I for one would have liked to learn more about how the girls got enrolled in it, what kind of work was required of them, what badges they could expect to earn, etc. I suppose the author felt that her readers would know all about guiding already but it was frustrating for a reader like me who would have liked more explanation. The princess plot is a cliché in every school story I've read so far but I enjoyed it nonetheless. Looking forward to more, as usual. ( )
  RubyScarlett | Nov 11, 2013 |
School story meets Ruritanian fantasy in this third entry in Elinor M. Brent-Dyer's popular Chalet School series, which (originally) ran to fifty-eight titles, and which chronicles the many adventures of the girls who attended the international girls' school founded by Madge Bettany in the Austrian Tyrol. Opening in Belsornia, a make-believe Balkan nation somewhere to the east of Italy, The Princess of the Chalet School follows the coming of Elisaveta of Belsornia to Miss Bettany's school on the Tiern See, after her recovery from a long illness. Joey Bettany, one of the few people at the school who is at first aware of Elisaveta's true identity, befriends the new girl, who, after some initial difficulties, settles down into the life of a Chalet pupil. After successfully (and surreptitiously) prompting the dismissal of the school's horrid new matron, Miss Webb, with their subtle pranks and 'talking' campaign, the girls seem set for a trouble-free year. But the princess's scheming cousin Count Cosimo and his henchman are soon on the scene, and a kidnapping plot puts both Elisaveta and Joey in danger...

This was an entertaining entry in the series! I particularly enjoyed the thorough routing of the insufferable Miss Webb, and the imaginative methods used by the girls to accomplish their purpose! That said, I did find it interesting that their pranks in this regard - the snail incident (haha!), the efforts to discredit Miss Webb by speaking 'roughly' - were endorsed by the narrative, when similar campaigns, such as the Shakespearean slang episode in the second entry in the series, Jo of the Chalet School, were quickly discovered and shot down. Perhaps surreptitious rebellion is only acceptable when the target is universally disliked? Leaving that inconsistency aside, the story was still quite engaging, and I enjoyed the swash-buckling Ruritanian elements, even if they had me rolling my eyes a bit. As with its predecessors, I managed to track down an edition containing the original, unexpurgated version of the story - apparently the series was rewritten and condensed sometime in the 1960s, although this 80s reprint from Chambers contains the full text, as well as the original cover art by Nina K. Brisley - and finished it with a desire to continue reading! On to The Head Girl of the Chalet School! ( )
  AbigailAdams26 | Apr 2, 2013 |
Despite its obviously implausible plot, this book remains as vividly fresh, alive and enjoyable as it was the first time I read it. I completely forgive Brent-Dyer her far-fetched plot because she carries it off so well and adds so much to the series. This is one of those titles that makes for great escapism and wonderful Sunday reading. ( )
  mandochild | Apr 17, 2010 |
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Into the pretty bedroom came the great English doctor, a jolly smile on his face as he approached the bed where his patient was lying.
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This is the third in a series of stories which feature the inhabitants of a school in the Austrian Tyrol, Chalet School. In this particular story, Joey and the school's resident princess are involved in an adventure.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 000690601X, Paperback)

This is the third in a series of stories which feature the inhabitants of a school in the Austrian Tyrol, Chalet School. In this particular story, Joey and the school's resident princess are involved in an adventure.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:12:07 -0400)

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