The newest book by Sharon Creech, The Castle Corona is about two peasant children who become the official tasters for a royal family.
Pia and Enzio have to stay with an evil man named Master Pangini, who makes them cook, clean, and work for him. Pia is the eldest, so she has more work to do around the house. But everything changes when the King’s men come and take them to the castle.
The story also follows the members of the royal family: the King, Queen, and three royal children.
The character lineup in the castle includes the King’s hermit, a quiet, wise human being. The King gets most of his information from the hermit. Queen Gabriella begins to get jealous of the hermit’s close relationship to the King, so she gets her own hermit.
The eldest child is a prince named Gianni. He is heir to the throne and a lover of poetry. He would rather run through a field of flowers and write poetry than be King.
The middle child is also a prince named Vito. Vito is the son who wants to be King. He loves to fight and race horses.
The last child is a princess named Fabrizia. She always gets what she wants, but she is confused about her beauty. What is it all for, she wonders.
Pia and Enzio are scared when they first go to the castle. They assumed they would be thrown in the dungeon! When they find out they are going to be tasters, they become very excited. A taster is someone who tastes the food before another person eats it, to make sure it is not poisonous.
Enzio becomes friends with Prince Vito. They play with swords nearly every day. Prince Gianni and Pia also begin to develop a relationship, although neither of them quite understands what they are feeling. Does the Prince like Pia or not? You’ll have to read to find out!
The Castle Corona is a great book. It is filled with drama and mystery. I think it is one of the best books I have ever read. You would probably think the same if you read it.
All children dream about being a prince or princess. They should read this book because it makes you feel like you are one of the characters in it. I thought I was a real princess!
To find out what inspired Sharon Creech to write this book, check out my interview with the author.
— Megan Dolan, Scholastic News Kid Reporter