Gr 3-4-- Florizella is a princess in a contemporary country, where magic exists, but everyday life is recognizably like readers' own. She likes to spend her days outside, riding her horse around the forest, and finding adventures with her best friend, Prince Bennett. She releases some orphan wolf cubs she has adopted into the forest, but the biggest and friendliest of them ends up living in the castle with Florizella and her family. This modern tale with traditional fairy tale elements has a spirited heroine and lots of black-and-white drawings. Except for occasional cuteness, Gregory's telling is readable and appealing. It's a nice step up for fans of Jane Yolen's Sleeping Ugly (Coward, 1981), even without the magic spells. --JoAnn Rees, Sunnyvale Public Library, CA
Princess Florizella of the Seven Kingdoms is an active, outdoorsy girl. Caught alone one day in the Purple Forest during a violent storm, Florizella seeks shelter in a cave that houses a family of wolves. She makes friends with the pack, and when a hunter kills the adult wolves, she adopts the four cubs and raises them as pets--until their destructive play and ravenous appetities provoke the queen to order the cubs kenneled until they are old enough to hunt, at which point they must be returned to the wild. Though Florizella releases the cubs as promised, Samson, the boldest of the pack, keeps returning and eventually saves her life. Gregory presents a whimsical contemporary fairy tale with a plucky heroine. Children in T-shirts, sweaters, and Wellingtons romp with horses and puppyish wolves in Aggs' friendly black-and-white drawings. This is too precious for young people interested in the predatory habits of wolves, but the story should still appeal to those intrigued by unusual pets.