A friend of LeedsBookClub (say hello on twitter here!), Marie is writing an EPIC review of The Tenth Kingdom!
Continued from Part Four!
(Quick recap – Virginia and her father Tony have fallen through a magic mirror from New York into the nine Magical Fairy Kingdom.
In the company of a Wolf and an enchanted Prince – currently a Dog – Virginia and Tony must travel through the Kingdoms, seeking the evil Queen. She is the Prince’s step-mother and has hidden his real body.
It is only by helping the Prince that they will be able to find another Magic Mirror to take them home…)
The Queen is now ensconced in Wendell’s castle when she hears a tapping from one of her mirrors. It’s the Troll Stooges!
They wanted to let The Queen know they are back and if she can tell their dad they are okay. She tells them he’s dead and that Virginia poisoned him. (Ooh, she’s evil).
Tony, Virginia and Prince have made their way up Dragon Mountain and have come to a
cave with a Dragons head opening. (Spooky).
They enter the tunnel and after what seems like hours to them (about a page to us) come to a sign telling them they are in the 9th Kingdom Royal Dwarf Mines.
Shortly after discovering this sign they enter a chamber filled with Dwarves and they see a magic mirror being made. As luck would have it Tony’s bad luck gives them away and the Dwarves aren’t very happy for outsiders to see the birth of a mirror! The penalty for entering
their mines is death and also the dwarves discover that they broke 1 (yes 1) of the great travelling mirrors they’re even more annoyed. So they decide to throw them down an old mine shaft, until they pass a truth mirror and it reveals Wendell’s true form.
They change their minds about killing them and instead decide to give them a tour. The Librarian shows them many types of mirror but can’t help them locate a travelling mirror and suggests asking Gustav (who is a very old mirror). Through much cajoling and rhyming (yes old mirrors talk in rhyme, very helpful) they discover that one mirror was smashed by an idiot, the other lies at the bottom of the sea and the other was stolen by The Queen who he tells them is hiding in Wendell’s castle.
Unfortunately they can’t find out more information as Tony picks that moment to knock over all the mirrors in the room. (Oops). So it’s back to wanting to kill them again.
So they flee for their lives.
Tony, of course, causes more problems for them along the way by first breaking his wrist and then falling and breaking his back!
So this forces Virginia to try and find an exit and help all on her own. After travelling for a while she comes to an ice cave, and in the centre of the cave lies Snow White buried in an ice coffin.
She’s examining the coffin when a voice behind her
says “Hello Virginia”. (You would so shit yourself wouldn’t you)!
Virginia on the other hand turns round and asks who the person is. Obviously it’s Snow White who reveals she has been
guiding their way and shielding them from The Queen.
She goes on to tell her tale and says that Virginia stands on the edge of greatness and will one day be an advisor to other lost girls. (#Sequel, #Sequel, #Sequel).
She gives her a mirror that will show her what she does and does not want to see and tells her that The Queen will strike with poison and it is also the only way to defeat her. In order to do
this Virginia must find the poisoned comb that the Stepmother tried to kill Snow White with.
(The words needle and haystack spring to mind).
Snow White tells Virginia to embrace the dark and grants her wish of ending Tony’s bad luck and fixing his back. She then tells her she must go to him.
It’s very lucky she did as The Huntsman has found Tony and is about to torture him for V’s whereabouts. Luckily she arrives in time to prevent this and bashes him on the head with the
Virginia tells Tony to get up, that his back is no longer broken. He’s amazed to discover he can move. Virginia leads him to the ice cave only there’s nothing there now. (Strange, almost
like magic). They find the way out and Virginia pulls out her new mirror. She asks it who the fairest in the land is and The Queen appears in the mirror. They’re both shocked to discover
The Queen is Virginia’s mother.
Part 4: The Prince Formerly Known as Dog.
Virginia is unbelievably shocked to discover her Mother isn’t living in Miami as Tony had told her (it turns out to stop her asking where she was). She’s also a bit miffed he threw her
mirror away but as he points out if they can see her, she can see them.
The Trolls are hot on their trail and have found The Huntsman they decide to team up in order to find Tony, Virginia and Wendell quicker. Tony and Virginia are chatting about her Mum when all of a sudden they’re hit with troll dust and knocked out.
They come too in the back of a wagon chained together. Their only choice is to jump out and leave Wendell. Tony’s not sure why they jumped out if they’re still going to the castle but Virginia says they need to find a weapon.
They come to a sign indicating that there’s two ways to Wendell’s castle 1 is 39 miles and the other is 13 miles. Guess which one they take (and it goes through a swamp, get through there no problem)!
They’re trekking through the swamp when three girls appear telling them that everyone who enters the swamp ends up with the swamp witch. They must remember three things to make it through the swamp; don’t drink water, eat the mushrooms or fall asleep.
They then disappear, but not before telling them they’re doomed. (What cheerful girls).
They eventually come to an island and decide to have a rest and some food. But before they can eat anything they fall asleep.
Luckily for them Wolf (sigh) is hot on their trail and arrives at the island in time to rescue them from the vines that are dragging them into the water.
Virginia is so pleased to see Wolf (as would we all, am i right ladies)? And walks by his side as they carry on their journey. They come to a shack surrounded by what looks like a mirror
graveyard with mirrors all babbling away to themselves. They realise it’s the swamp witches house and attempt to creep past but she sees them.
Only lucky for them it’s not a witch it’s
Clayface the Goblin. He invites them in and removes Tony and Virginia’s chains. He then tells them the story of the swamp witch who was actually the original wicked Stepmother. Turns out she’s buried in the cellar (basement to those in the US).
Virginia decides that what she seeks is in the cellar so goes down to look at the body. It’s like an evil version of Snow White’s ice tomb. A horrible voice asks Virginia if she’s lost and then sucks her into a vision.
She sees her Mum running through Central Park crying, and a voice asking her if she’s lost. She turns and see’s The Stepmother in a doorway hanging in midair. Christine (The Queen) sees a gnarled hand reach through. The stepmother promises her if she takes her hand and comes with her she will forget her pain forever.
So she steps through and The Stepmother says that if she continues her work for her she will give her all her power.
Virginia snaps out of the vision and notices clutched in The Stepmothers hand the poisoned comb she needs to defeat The Queen. (Good job they took that shortcut).
After a meal they leave Clayface’s and continue onwards. Virginia asks Wolf how he found her and he says he could follow her scent across time (sigh, whimper). She says that she didn’t mean to chase him away and she thinks she loves him (Aw).
At the castle The Queen finally has both Wendell’s but she is not pleased they let the girl get away.
The gang are now within sight of the castle and Tony decides it’s time for a cup of tea before going any further. So Wolf volunteers to look for firewood and Virginia unable to leave him
The air is electric between them and it’s obvious what’s going to happen, yep Wolf wants to play hide and seek!
When he finds her they play fight and start kissing and then you know what happens.
(Now it’s at this point I’m thinking this would NEVER happen. Films, TV shows and books get it
so wrong sometimes. Like the classic scene, couple wake up together and start kissing, erm
help what about the dreaded morning breath?! So i find it hard to believe Virginia would have sex with Wolf after she’s been roughing it for days. Come on ladies – admit it things have got hot and heavy with someone and in the back of your mind your thinking “need to stop this not shaved my legs for at least a week”. So unless Virginia has packed really well she needs a good shower, probably needs to shave her legs and pits, brush her teeth etc. It just would not happen; you ladies out there know what i mean.
Okay rant over, apologies on with the review).
Wolf and Virginia finally make it back to Tony looking very dishevelled and Wolf’s tail is sticking out the back of his trousers!
They have their breakfast and see carriages rumbling past so decide it’s best to wait till dark before entering the castle. Virginia tells Wolf The Queen is her mother, but he admits he
knew from her scent. (Urgh). Tony’s concerned about what they’re going to do all day but Wolf and Virginia are going to sleep.
To be concluded…
The Tenth Kingdom