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Reviewed by Anne-Marie Reynolds for Readers' Favorite
Be Careful What You Wish For by JM Hughson is Volume 1 of The Idlebury Series. The residents of the Kingdom of Idlebury are, well, idle, quite happy to let the king and queen do everything for them. The king heads off on business on the night the queen goes into labor but, as far as the queen is concerned, her baby daughter, next in line to the throne, dies. There is another daughter though, one she had adopted, and the queen sets off to find her. Gwendolyn Fanny is an imaginative little girl and after being housebound for two weeks, her imagination has run away with her. Gwen wants to be powerful, she wants everyone to like her and she really wants an adventure. Leafing through Universal Scandals, Gwen spots a story about the queen looking for her daughter and decides that she is the missing princess. All of a sudden, she is tossed into a world even her imagination couldn’t have dreamed up, and now Gwen has to prove that she is the missing princess. Tests, obstacles, poisoning, raising the dead, Gwen has to face it all and more before she reaches the Royal Assembly to take a test that has never been passed before. Her destiny is about to change. Is Gwen really the missing princess or should she have been a bit more careful what she wished for?
Be Careful What You Wish For (Idlebury Series Volume 1) by JM Hughson is a great story that suits its target audience down to the ground. I’ve read a few fantasy stories for young adults and this is one of the best. It's packed with action and the story grabbed me from the first page. The language used in the story fits the age range well and it’s a neat plot, well-written and clear. There is plenty going on to keep the attention of any age of reader and this is more than just your typical fantasy story. There are underlying stories here, in particular that what you want may not always be for the best, and you really should be careful what you wish for – things have a habit of happening when you least expect it! The characters are well-rounded, likable and developed properly. We learn bits and pieces as the story goes on and I suspect there is more to be learned in the next volume. I thoroughly enjoyed this story, and am looking forward to volume 2.