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Unlocking the Spell (Wide-Awake Princess Series)

Unlocking the Spell (Wide-Awake Princess Series)

4.6 51
by E. D. Baker

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Bears, princes, witches, dwarves, and other fanciful fairy tale creatures step out in this charming story about Annie and her sister Gwendolyn ... and Gwendolyn's beloved prince, Beldegard the Bear. You see, Beldegard is only human when he's near Annie, so Gwendolyn is desperate to find the evil dwarf who turned Beldegard into a bear in the first place, and reverse


Bears, princes, witches, dwarves, and other fanciful fairy tale creatures step out in this charming story about Annie and her sister Gwendolyn ... and Gwendolyn's beloved prince, Beldegard the Bear. You see, Beldegard is only human when he's near Annie, so Gwendolyn is desperate to find the evil dwarf who turned Beldegard into a bear in the first place, and reverse the terrible spell. But Annie has just traipsed all over the kingdom to free her sister from the Sleeping Beauty spell...will she want to set out on a magical quest once more? Or has she had enough of watching her sister gaze lovingly into Beldegard's eyes?
With trademark humor and many delightful twists, E. D. Baker brings us back to a magical land that offers many layers of fun and fantasy.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Beverley Fahey
This sequel to The Wide Awake Princess (Bloomsbury, 2010) takes place just one week after Gwendolyn (a.k.a. Sleeping Beauty) has been awakened by a prince's kiss. Unfortunately, the Prince has been changed into a bear by an evil spell-casting dwarf. The king has instructed Annabelle (Gwennie's sister) and the handsome Prince Liam to accompany Belegard, the prince- turned-bear to search for the dwarf and break the enchantment. Annie has the ability to fend off magic, so she will protect her companions from any harm. Not to be left behind, Gwennie sneaks off to join in the quest, much to her sister's annoyance. The journey takes them through neighboring kingdoms, where they interact with many familiar fairy tale characters. As they wander in search of the Dark Forest, they are led to Snow White and the cottage of the seven dwarfs; while Annie has been using tricks of her own to thwart evil along the way, she saves her strongest skills to protect Snow White from her conniving stepmother. In return, Snow White reveals that there is an eighth dwarf and he is the one that Annie, Liam, and Belegard have been seeking. A dramatic showdown ensues and once again good triumphs over evil. There are a few glimmers of suspense and drama in what is otherwise a plodding tale. There is not enough action to call it a true adventure and the characters are one-dimensional. Annie does show some spunk but opportunity is missed to develop the relationship between the antagonistic sisters. Readers will enjoy coming upon Mother Hubbard, The Breman Town Musicians, Snow White and Rose Red, the Three Bears, and others along the way. There is enough comic interaction and the hint of budding romance to keep readers engaged. Reviewer: Beverley Fahey
School Library Journal
Gr 4–7—Only a week has passed since Annie found the prince to break the curse affecting her sister, Gwendolyn (aka Sleeping Beauty,) in The Wide-Awake Princess (Bloomsbury, 2010). Unfortunately, said prince is himself enchanted and remains stuck in the form of a bear, and Gwennie desperately wants her sister's help changing her true love back to a human. Annie agrees, setting off with the bear prince and Liam, her princely companion from her first quest, to find the dwarf who cast the curse. Gwendolyn sneaks away and joins them, much to Annie's annoyance, and the four travel through the neighboring kingdoms in pursuit of the errant dwarf. As with the first title, readers will enjoy spotting the familiar fairy-tale characters Annie and company meet along the way. More self-assured after her success in breaking her sister's curse, she continues to be a take-charge princess who uses her wits and magic-neutralizing abilities to solve problems. Her character and the way various fairy tales are woven into the narrative are the strengths of the novel, though it's not without its flaws. There are missed opportunities to develop the relationship between Annie and Gwendolyn, and Annie and Liam's romance fizzles disappointingly. However, this will likely satisfy fans of the first book and appeal to readers who enjoy lighthearted retellings of fairy tales.—Amanda Raklovits, Champaign Public Library, IL
Kirkus Reviews
Annie has been home less than a week after finding a prince to wake up sister Gwennie, aka Sleeping Beauty (The Wide-Awake Princess, 2010), when her father demands she undertake another quest: seek the dwarf who turned Gwennie's beloved Prince Beldegard into a bear and convince him to undo the spell. Annie's conflicted response--gratitude that her newly awakened family no longer shuns her for her gift for repelling magic; resentment that they are so quick to send her away--is quickly sketched, especially in relation to Gwennie. Annie agrees to go after stipulating that Gwennie wait at home while she and her sweetheart Liam, led by Beldegard, make the trip. Surprisingly, Gwennie runs away from the castle to join their journey across many lands and through several fairy tales. As before, readers will delight in the twists the author makes to the familiar tales, seamlessly weaving them into the plot, from "Snow White and Rose Red" to "The Three Little Pigs" and more, but despite the often-comical interactions, there is not much action. The hunt eventually leads the foursome to Snow White's home with the dwarves (who knew an eighth dwarf had gone bad?). Nor does the stream of sometimes-petulant bickering provide insight into the characters, leaving the sisters' relationship unplumbed and making the romantic resolutions feel shallow. The hint of a future romance between Snow White and Maitland, Beldegard's formerly fratricidal brother, is particularly disturbing. Recommend only to those set on an undemanding jaunt through retold fairy tales. (Fantasy. 8-12)

Product Details

Bloomsbury USA
Publication date:
Wide-Awake Princess Series , #2
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Sales rank:
File size:
3 MB
Age Range:
10 - 14 Years

Meet the Author

E. D. BAKER is the author of Fairy Lies, Fairy Wings, The Wide-Awake Princess and the highly successful Tales of the Frog Princess series, which was the inspiration for the Disney blockbuster "The Princess and the Frog." She lives with her family in rural Maryland.
E. D. Baker is the author of the Tales of the Frog Princess series, The Wide-Awake Princess series, The Fairy-Tale Matchmaker series, and many other delightful books for young readers, including A Question of Magic, Fairy Wings,and Fairy Lies. Her first book, The Frog Princess, was the inspiration for Disney's hit movie The Princess and the Frog. She lives with her family and their many animals in Churchville, Maryland.


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The Unlocking the Spell: A Tale of the Wide-Awake Princess 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 51 reviews.
GeoLibrarian More than 1 year ago
I've loved everything I've read by E.D. Baker and this book was no exception. With plenty of humor and heart, I eagerly followed Annie on her quest to find help for her sister's betrothed. I love the idea of a character upon whom magic has no effect, it creates unique and often humorous situations for both Annie and those around her both good and bad. The writing flows smoothly and allows the reader to focus on the story rather than the words (always a good sign in my opinion). I enjoyed reading about the different fairy tale characters in roles both old and new. For example, Old Mother Hubbard as a peacemaker, evil dwarves, Snow White, along with lots of fairies make the book a delight to read. There is a nice touch of romance, just enough to satisfy middle grade girls. A fun light read, perfect for middle grade girls.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved The Wide-Awake Princess!!! It was such a good book! I just bought this book Unlocking the Spell and Im totally hooked!!! ~ InkHeartLover
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Awesome book! I knew Annie and Liam were perfect for each other!! As Annie, Liam, Gwendolyn, and Beldegard go on a quest to find the evil dwarf that cast a spell to turn Beldegard into a bear. They encounter a nice Mother Hubbard, a Cinderella story gone wrong, and much more! Please read , you won't be sorry!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It is really good so far need to buy it though. If u liked the wide awake princess u will love this book. They soooo need to make a movie. E.d baker is an awesome author u will love his work. I truely recommend this author.
Barbie1982 More than 1 year ago
I very much enjoyed "The Wide-Awake Princess" and had fun traipsing about the fairy-tale kingdoms with Princess Annie. In the sequel, Annie continues her travels, this time searching for the cure to the curse that keeps her sister's husband trapped in the shape of a bear. However, it felt like this journey was more contrived - the characters dashed about willy-nilly, encountering all the other fairy-tale folks you could hope for. Ostensibly following the trail of an evil dwarf, instead I kept hoping that they would just go home. In summary, it was diverting and light-hearted and I enjoyed reading it. But the first book was better.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Ok i bought w.a.p and LOVED it i bought u.t.s and loving it
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have read all her books and hate when their series are over so I was glad that The Wide Awake Princess has a sequel.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book cleverly illistrated several fairytales and fit it into one delicious book. It was charming, clever, and witty. I simply couldn't put it down! This is a must read and you will be very happy if you do. Baker makes you feel as if you are inside the story! You have to read!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
this book is awesome, however, E.D Baker must make a book three and many more!!!!!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this book espiecally the ending
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I can't wait to read this because I loved the first one! I was unable to put it down. :) I would recommed it to any person who likes adventure,humer, and mistery.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Is there going 2 b more??? Cuz i shure hope there is, i LOVE these books!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! C=
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Really loved this book, I have read every book in each of her series, and this is great!!!! =D
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this book i read the first book every time i got a break at camp last summer when i saw this one i got it read it and read it again and again and again i do not even remeber how many times i have read this year.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Best book ever i got it at the book fair and i was hooked
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The author puts different fairy tales into the story and it really makes the book more fun to read. I also like how her family doesn't exclude her as much. Can't wait for the third book!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It is so good!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have only read the sample but I think it looks good. However I don't like it whan some people say bad things on reviews because if you would not say that infront of a adult you should not say/write it at all. I think that is inportent because you can always say you did not like it in a nice way like it was not my favorite book or something like that
verday More than 1 year ago
I love how it seems to tie in all of the Grimm Brother's stories even those that are less known to others for example "Snow White and Red Rose". Not only that but it also tells of a tale by its self.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It was even better than the first!!!!!!!!!!!It has more excitement & danger!!!!!!Ecspeially at the end when the most unespected thing happens but u have to read it to find out!!!!!!!
SherrieLM More than 1 year ago
I've been reading aloud this book with my daughter who is in kindergarten. She loves predicting who all the cameo fairytale characters are (Little Red Riding Hood, The Three Bears, Cinderella); it is fun to hear even these characters' back stories. Personally, I find the pacing of this story a little slower than the previous book, but my daughter enjoys it as much as the first. She likes the developing romance with Liam and Annie. And we both like how Annie and Liam are strong, honorable characters who seek out adventure and aren't afraid to go toe to toe with villains. I am sure elementary and middle school girls would enjoy reading this book on their own--or even having it read to them.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I havent read it but i read the 1st one it was so good!!!!! Is hte second one good? Well you will have to read it to pfind ? Just hope they find the dwarf. I also think you should read the The Frog princess serues also by ed baker it made the frog prince.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was so well written. After I read the first book, The Wide Awake Princess, I liked it much that I found this book. I finished it today. And it is definitly worth all your money. It is a quick read but keeps you on the edge of your seat the whole time! I highly reccommend this book. BUT DONT FORGET TO READ THE FIRST BOOK, THE WIDE AWAKE PRINCESS, FIRST!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is the best book ever but if you have not read the wide awake princess yet it might not make sense!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Omg, annabelle and liam make such a cute couple!