Writer: Jeremy Whitley
Artist; M. Goodwin
What They Say:
Still waiting for your prince to come? Tired of spending night after night locked in a secluded tower? Ready for your own adventure? So are we. Princeless is the story of Princess Adrienne, one princess who’s tired of waiting to be rescued. Join Adrienne and her guardian dragon, Sparky, as they begin their own quest in an all-ages action adventure designed specifically for those who are tired of waiting to be rescued… and who are ready to save themselves.
What a wonderful, fun story! The story opens with the typical princess in a tower. From the illustration style, it’s clear that it’s about to make fun of the craziness of the traditional tale. Quickly, we switch to an annoyed princess named Adrienne listening to her mother drone on about the “appropriate” ways to act as a princess of the kingdom. Being stuck in a tower is the best way to ensure she finds the right kind of prince as a husband, of course. Adrienne is having none of it. “Plot holes! Poor story design!” she declares. She will NOT be put in a tower herself, she claims.
Flash forward a few years, and Adrienne is sixteen and has been tricked into her own tower with a dragon guardian to devour the luckless princes who attempt her rescue. Adrienne is the kind of princess who makes me stand up and cheer. I know the word “spunky” gets overused, but this gal is spunky in spades. She’s fun, charming, and powerful. She’s also not even a little bit “fair” – as she points out to one of the princes who charges in to her rescue. I love it. So much for the “pale and flaxen haired” princess type. She decides she’s going to rescue herself, befriends her dragon, and charges off to save her sisters from their towers.
This most recent prince who fails to rescue her returns in defeat to the castle, and he even gets his own short story at the end of this issue. He gets his chance to show the silliness of princely expectations, just like Adrienne does for the princess side. I love them both, and I can’t wait to hear what happens next.
The illustration style meshes perfectly with the story. It’s a fun, slightly cartoony style with lots of pink tones. The humor in the pictures shines through, with entertaining poses and facial expressions. The coloring will hopefully attract girls to the pages, while the large sword on the cover should attract the boys. This is not just a “girl” story, though, and should be given to all kinds of kids. It’s an adventure tale, with plenty of humor and fun that will appeal to adults as well.
This is a fun story with a great embedded message. The message is shared with a light, witty touch – the best possible way to get people to actually hear it. As a teacher and a parent, I’m thrilled to see stories like this hit the stands. It gives a chance for both boys and girls to question the traditional notions taught in classic fairy tales, and that’s always a good thing. As an adult reader, I also completely loved it. I’ll be special ordering this one at my local bookstore to make sure I have copies for my classroom.
Readers Rating: [ratings]