The major theme of the novel is about surmounting difficulties and proving that the image others have of you is not necessarily true. People judge Alyssa for her job of being a princess and don’t see the underlying strength of her character. This reflects a common thread in fairytales generally that teach sentiments such as believing in yourself, having self-respect, working hard and that better times are ahead.
There is a focus on weight and body size with fortnightly “look-overs” to ensure that the princesses meet the high expectations of the management on physical appearance. This leads to excess gym work and dieting.
A positive aspect of the theme park scenario is the fundraising and provision of days for sick children of the Make a Wish Foundation and the “I Bleed Enchanted Fun Run” and donating blood for the blood bank.
The language of the novel focuses on names and sayings relevant to a theme park and sorority houses, with many Americanisms that might be unfamiliar to Australian readers. For instance, “Funyuns”, an American brand name, are onion-flavoured corn snacks.
This novel is a thoughtful and engaging book that forces the reader to examine their inner values. There is encouragement to believe in yourself and to utilise friends as a strong support network to get through tough times.
The sexual scenes and drug references are very mild and not at all descriptive, but there is strong language. While there is depth and emotion to the story it is also a fun read and once into the story it is hard to stop reading. It is suitable for readers of 14 years and above even though the characters are college students.