The Princess and the Goblin by George MacDonald

Many have described this book as dream-like, and I certainly won’t disagree with them. However if like me, you choose to engage with this story in audio format, you might find that the reader seems to have fallen under its spell. The delivery was most soporific, and if this was intentional, kudos to the narrator as it certainly added to the atmosphere of this old(ish) tale – first published in 1872.

Much has been said of MacDonald’s tender and gentle style of writing, and again I won’t argue, but for me the stand out character, that of the great great grandmother, was predominantly possessed of neither fair attribute. In her I sensed danger. Powerful and unpredictable. She is conveyed as being different and apart from the other ‘human’ characters both in terms of her aspect and location – however could not be considered evil as one might expect. She brought to mind Lewis’ Aslan. And much like those stories, for which MacDonald was an inspiration, this is no simplistic fairy-tale.



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