The other reviews have good summaries, so I'll focus on the pros and cons of this book. The supporting characters are what earned it 2 1/2 stars. Left up to the protagonists and their rushed excuse for a relationship, it would be 2. The author did a wonderful job of fleshing out the other princesses in the competition and making them real people. By the end of the story I wished Arianna or Goldie had been the main character instead of Violet. It would definitely have made for a more interesting point of view. The plot was good and the reasoning behind the tests was well-explained and gave logic to the original tale.
Unfortunately, the main characters were a bit of a let down. As seems to be the pattern in Debbie Viguie's Once Upon A Time series books, there is very little development between the main characters meeting and kissing passionately. After literally two conversations, the prince grabs Violet and kisses her vigorously, making me a little worried he might claim his right as a nobleman to take advantage of peasant women. Of course, making-out with near strangers is a little problem easily cleared up by swift declarations of love. Zero conversations and a few flowery notes later, he is vowing to die for her and walk through fire, though he knows nothing more than her face, name, dubious claim to royalty, and kindness to his horse. Even in their brief dialogs he is a weirdo. From the beginning he makes random statements completely unconnected to their conversations, though the reader assumes they are meant to be insulting since the girl always ends up nearly hitting him. This is all explained by "she brings out the devil in me." Um sure, making an enigmatic joke about the girl who saved your life being an old maid (or a prostitute?) is definitely roguish and charming, especially in the middle of a conversation about your wedding. All this, combined with the "dark and inscrutable expressions" always shadowing his face, convinced me that this man was not a prince, and he was not someone I could ever love, no matter how many times the other characters mentioned his kindness and good character. Redeeming qualities were certainly not apparent in anything he said or did until Violet got to the castle, after which he turned into a prating lovesick sap. Violet herself was a very flat character, and it seemed she only existed to be perfect and long for the next time she could kiss the prince.
Overall this was an entertaining take on The Princess and the Pea, but the main characters' relationship ruined part of the book for me. For better protagonists and stronger writing, I would definitely recommend reading Cameron Dokey's Storyteller's Daughter.