Perhaps one of the most underappreciated games I've ever seen. It's a lot of fun, has beautiful artwork and character animation, and a good story line. I especially recomend it if you like love stories, since that's what most of the story arcs focus on until you get to Velvet's book since she's more concerned with changing her fate. They even have a princess character fall in love with a frog prince (my favorite at the current moment I think).
The game is a side-scroller like those in the old days, and it does a good job with it. There's a deffinate lag in one of the boss battles, but most of the time you don't have to worry about that.
There are five main characters, and you play through each one's story to get to the next. After their stories are all finished, there are two or three other books that become available with have the epilogue chapters. I haven't gotten that far yet, but I have a basic idea of what happens (accidently found spoilers). It's interesting because you get to see the same events from multiple points of view.