Introduced by Maria Tatar
Illustrated by Madalina Andronic
The tale of Princess Irene's quest to defeat an army of goblins is a treasured classic from George MacDonald, the master of children's fairy stories.
Princess Irene lives in a large house, ‘half castle, half farmhouse’, on the side of a mountain. She is cossetted and loved by the whole household, who look after her while her ‘king-papa’ is away travelling his kingdom. Little do they know that an army of goblins far below the ground is planning to storm the castle. To defeat them, Irene must rely for help on the miner boy, Curdie, and on her beautiful, mysterious great-great-grandmother, who secretly inhabits the castle tower.
‘I regarded him as my master’
George MacDonald was a pioneer of children’s fantasy literature and influenced writers such as E. Nesbit and J. R. R. Tolkien. C. S. Lewis said of MacDonald that, ‘I fancy I have never written a book in which I did not quote from him.’ This edition contains an introduction by Maria Tatar, Professor of Germanic Languages and Literature at Harvard University and an expert on folklore and fairy tales. The bold illustrations are by Madalina Andronic, a Romanian artist who draws inspiration from traditional fairy tales and Slavic folklore.
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