Study Guide

Enna in The Goose Girl

By Shannon Hale


We love our girl Enna because she's always keepin' it real. When Ani first ventures into the world of service to the king of Bayern—without her entourage or fancy clothes for the first time—she's not sure who to trust or where to turn. Enter Enna.

This fiery chick does more than just babysit chickens all day—she's also fiercely loyal to Ani and always willing to help her friend out. When Ani asks her to keep the yellow hair thing under wraps, Enna does… until she decides to let everyone in on the secret to protect her friend. In other words, Enna doesn't just listen to Ani's stories and share her secrets—she also tells her bestie when she needs to take action. Enna's always on hand to grab a peace officer, rally the troops, or even tell off Conrad if Ani needs it.

Plus, this gal pal also knows what it's like to talk to something other than humans. Say what? She bashfully admits this to Ani one night by the fire:

"I get to looking and can't look away. Don't you ever feel like fire is a friendly thing? That it's signaling to you with its flames, offering something?" (10.20)

For Ani—who can talk to animals—having a BFF who understands non-human communication can only strengthen their bond. Enna, like Ani, knows how it feels to be in touch with the earth; she is being open-minded and willing to accept things that put other people off. So it's no surprise that Enna helps Ani conquer her fears and confront Selia in the end—she isn't afraid to follow the truth, even if it means going up against a would-be princess.

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