CASTLE HANGNAIL by Ursula Vernon (2015)
An unlikely anti-heroine becomes the evil mistress of a castle – in a contrived case of mistaken identity – with heartwarming and mischievous results.
Use as a mentor text to see good use of:
- Multiperson viewpoint* – We feel close to the MC, but still feel connected to the story when she disappears for a few chapters.
- Leaves open-ended questions but wraps up the story anyway
- Antiheroine who stands up to a bully in just enough of a novel way
- Inverse of some fantasy/fairytale tropes (and is hilarious)
- Flip-flop between MC’s good and evil natures (in a way that can foster good discussion with a middle-grade audience).**
*You probably don’t want to do this in your first book. You’re a rookie, Vernon… is a former rookie.
**Yeah, apparently actual children sometimes read children’s books?