The Enchantress Returns by Chris Colfer
Published by: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: August 6th, 2013
Series: The Land of Stories, #2
Genres: Middle Grade, Fantasy, Adventure
Date Read: April 18th, 2014
Links: Goodreads | Book Depository | Booktopia | B&N | Author’s Website | Book 1 | Book 3
After decades of hiding, the evil Enchantress who cursed Sleeping Beauty is back with a vengeance.
Alex and Conner Bailey have not been back to the magical Land of Stories since their adventures in The Wishing Spell ended. But one night, they learn the famed Enchantress has kidnapped their mother! Against the will of their grandmother, the twins must find their own way into the Land of Stories to rescue their mother and save the fairy tale world from the greatest threat it’s ever faced.
The first book, The Wishing Spell, took us into a land where we got to read about our favourite childhood characters and find out what happened to them after their happily ever after. We got to go on an adventure with two unlikely hero’s and travel around trying to save the whole world from an evil queen. Alex and Connor Bailey haven’t been back to the Land of Stories in nearly a year, and when they get back things aren’t quite as they had left them.
A year later; Alex and Connor Bailey spent the past year since their last adventure living their lives as normal as can be. On a day when everything seemed to be going great for them, their whole world was turned upside down. Their Grandmother was quick to make sure they were protected and wouldn’t let them intervene in what was taking place in the Fairy-Tale World.
Unbeknownst to Alex and Connor the evil Enchantress has return to the Land of Stories and is causing havoc all over, ruining the once beautiful land, pushing her plans to take over the world. Alex and Connor must find their own way into the Land of Stories before it is to late and save their friends from her powers.
I love how much more of this world we got to see. With a large focus on the villains of fairy tales we are treated to back stories and twists to the classic tales that we know and love. While some of these villains have nearly redeeming backstories there are others that are evil for the sake of being evil, I appreciated this mix because it’s hard to believe that everyone at one point was good, or that no one is evil for evil’s sake.
This world, with the assistance of the map in the front of the novels, is easy to follow. The plot is clear and concise, and it is easy to visualize each of the kingdom’s as the twins and their companions travel around the fairy-tale world.
However, I do feel that this book did recycle the same kind of plot as the first novel. I do understand that it would be difficult to construct largely different plots in the world, and that repetition is useful in children’s literature, but as an older reader, it is a bit tedious for reading.
I would highly, recommend this series to those who enjoy their favourite childhood stories being twisted and reinterpreted in fun and thought provoking ways.
Overall, The Land of Stories series is a fun read, and book #2 shows some definite improvement in the writing. It was an enjoyable book to read.