This story begins about a year after Curdie, the miner's son, saved the princess lrene from being carried away by the goblins who lived under the earth in her father’s kingdom. You can read all about that in another Puﬂin book, 'The Princess and the Goblin'. It looked as if the kingdom would run like clockwork once the goblins were gone, but a lot can happen in a year, and so it came about that Irene’s great-great-grandmother summoned Curdie and sent him to the king’s court, where a great task awaited him. Before he went she gave him the rare and magic gift of knowing the true nature of every person whose hand he grasped, and promised him a companion in his adventure. So Curdie set out with his new companion, who was the most unexpected, the ugliest, and the most faithful friend you could imagine, and found the city full of confusion, and the poor ailing king surrounded by deceiving courtiers and slapdash servants, with only the princess Irene to comfort him. . . . There is plenty of George MacDonald's special magic in this book, his ability to make you see how beautiful a good action is, and his wonderful story-telling. The adventures of the princess and Curdie in the city are just as exciting as their earlier ones among the goblins.
For readers of nine years and over.
Cover design by Pauline Baynes
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