Reading this was an odd experience. It is a fairy-tail fantasy story from over a hundred years ago, so it an old fashion story but no where near old enough to be a "folk-tale" or anything like that. It's different, like the introduction says. The language used, both by characters and by the narration, is not something I am used to. Not better or worse, specifically, just different.
Also, seeing the different concept of "fantasy" from the author's day is interesting. One can see the development of certain things between now and then. The goblins, for instance, don't look or sound like the goblins from many fantasy depictions today. They look kind of like demented dwarves, and the hogpoge creatures they domesticate are also really bizarre looking.
As for the plot, its split between what Princess Irene does and what Miner Curdie does in relation to the goblins and such. While Curdie has a pretty clear thread of spying on the goblins after accidentally overhearing them talk about an evil-plan, I can't say as much about Irene. She is not a passive protagonist, but also often seems to be skirting the edges of the events.
I'm not really sure what grade to give this book. I'm going to settle in the range of "I liked reading it".
Trickster Eric Novels gives "The Princess and the Goblin" a B+
Click here for my previous book review: Vidia and the Fairy Crown
Brian Wilkerson is an independent novelist, freelance book reviewer, and writing advice blogger. He studied at the University of Minnesota and came away with bachelor's degrees in English Literature and History (Classical Mediterranean Period concentration).
His fantasy series, Journey to Chaos, is currently available on Amazon as an ebook or paperback.