Series: One companion novel, Princess of Glass, with a third, Princess of the Silver Wood, on the way.
When the kingdom of Westfalin finally declares victory on Analousia after twelve years of war, Galen has no home to return to. Luckily, the eighteen year old soldier is able to find work with his irritable uncle, keeper of the Queen's Garden. He soon falls in love with King Gregor's eldest daughter. But Rose and her eleven sisters are cursed. Every third night, the princesses disappear and wear out holes in their dancing slippers. None of the princes King Gregor recruits can solve the mystery.
Can a lowly under-gardener triumph where so many princes have failed? Galen is prepared to find out, armed with nothing more than his soldier's stamina and true love. Well, that and an invisibility cloak, herbs to ward of evil, his trusty knitting needles, two pistols, a rifle, and a penknife. Soldiers are supposed to carry weapons, after all. But let's just leave off at true love.
This is my third reading and I still can't figure out why it's so good. I think it must be Galen. Don't let the title and Ballgown Babe fool you. This isn't a girly book. It's told from both Rose and Galen's perspectives but focuses mostly on him. I love Galen. He's a respectful soldier boy when he needs to be, stands his ground when it's important to him, and turns into a cocky flirt whenever it suits him.
Princess of the Midnight Ball is an action packed, addicting read.