I am linking to the reviews of a book that I have meant to read for a long time. It is called Before You Meet Prince Charming, by Sarah Mally. The comments on Amazon were all very positive about this book, so I was surprised to read this blogger's viewpoints.
I am gratified that I have been saved from spending money to purchase this book for my girls. There are views in this book that I do not wish my daughters to absorb.
I am disturbed by Sarah Mally's claims that a girl needs to be rescued. Excuse me, unless something dire happens, we don't need to be rescued. Being rescued implies that there is some sort of dangerous tragedy happening in your life, like a house fire or being held at gunpoint. Certainly, please help anyone that is suffering from such atrocities. But if a young woman is simply living her day to day life, then she shouldn't need to be rescued. What the heck should she be saved from anyway? Doing dishes, mowing the grass, cleaning up after her dog? What? Why would a man desire a woman who wants to be saved from her regular life?
Also, I am troubled by the classism presented in the book. The nobility are all good and all wise. The snobbery that is present throughout this book is very evident. Anyone who disagrees with the King's parenting choices, according to the author, is either jealous or guilty about their own lives. The poor peasants are seen as easily led and tempted. So far, I am rooting for the commoners in this book to revolt, but I doubt that will happen. This type of thinking actually sounds like the reason that countries have rebelled against their leaders.
The mother-Queen-is rarely seen in this story. I don't know why that is so, but it troubles me that she is so little involved in her daughter's life. By the way, the fact that the Princess has no name irritates me also. Actually, I really disliked this goody good young woman. I was sort of hoping that the alligator that lived in the moat would eat her. Alas, the gator appears to be a vegetarian because he-according to Miss Mally- eats pond scum.
I am equally amazed that all festivities in the book are considered evil. Getting together with other young women and having fun is called evil. That is a bit strong. Having fun just for the sake of enjoyment is not a sin. Even in Franny Burney's works(1700's) the women went to balls and had social picnics. I have no idea why Miss Mally is against events where young people can meet and socialize.
Mally implies that those who don't follow her guidelines will automatically be unhappy. A lot of us dated and ended up happily married. To claim that there is one way to find a spouse when the human population is full of a variety of personalities, cultures and circumstances seems to be very narrow minded. It makes me wonder about the author's experience level with other people. Perhaps she isn't purposely being dishonest but has had limited contact with those who hold different views then her own.
What concerns me most is this quote from her book:A girl can defraud by dressing in a way so that boys will notice us, flirting with our eyes, or even just by the way we smile at a certain time or laugh at every jokeThat sounds much more extreme. This would be troublesome if something happened to a young girl like a sexual assault. The victim might think that she deserved her attack because she smiled at the man.
I realize that this is a popular book among many Christians. But there are apparent issues within the book that should be discussed before allowing our daughters to read the book.