About the Book:
Princess Celeste is bored to tears, and her brothers, Prince Jude and Prince Torrin, aren’t doing much better.
In a palace where all they have to look forward to are endless games of croquet and barley-water soup for supper, they don’t have much by way of excitement. Until the one night Torrin sees a light in a forgotten tower of the palace, and they meet a wonderful and mysterious aunt who unlocks a brand-new world of adventure they will never forget.
Targeted Age Group: 6-12 Years
Jude held up his torch to reveal a narrow hallway. The three children stepped inside, and Torrin closed the door behind them.
Something scurried in front of Celeste in the darkness. She jumped back. “A rat! How can there be a rat in our castle?”
“It’s a big rock house.” Jude’s face glowed in the torchlight. “Maybe some of the stones fell out of the walls and the rats got in that way.”
Celeste crept closer to Jude. “I don’t want to explore the tower if it has rats running around.”
Torrin turned. “Come on, Celeste.” His curly hair stood on end because he’d been running his fingers through it like he always did when he was excited. “You know what will happen if we go back now. We’ll lay there in our beds, and won’t be able to sleep. We’ll wonder, and wonder. We might drive ourselves crazy with all that wondering, and we’ll never find out what’s up in the tower.”
“Until Papa retires and I’m king,” said Jude. “Then we can go wherever we want. But that’s a long time from now. I don’t want to wait until then. Do you, Celeste?”
Celeste imagined herself laying in her royal bed, her little nose pointed up at the fluffy purple canopy that hung over it. She scrunched up her face. Yes, she most certainly would wonder. And it would drive me absolutely crazy. She squared her shoulders.
“All right, I suppose I’ll go a little further.”
The passage was narrower here than the main halls of the castle, and the floor was dusty.
“It doesn’t look like the maids get in here to clean much,” said Celeste.
“Why would they?” asked Torrin. “If no one sees it, who would care about the dust?”
Jude held his torch high, and the light bounced on the walls, creating spooky shadows.
Heavy wooden doors lined the sides of the hall.
“Locked,” said Torrin, as he tried one.
“I simply must ask the steward about these doors,” said Jude, trying the fifth locked hasp in a row. “What could possibly be stored behind them?”
“Jewels?” Celeste suggested.
“Maybe.” Torrin pointed ahead to the end of the passage and the biggest door of all. “Oh great. A dead end. If THAT one is locked, then we’ll have nothing to do but turn back.”
Jude grabbed the hasp and gave it a firm twist. And then it happened . . . the door clicked open.