Publication Date: September 6th 2018
Publisher: Lincoln Children’s Books
Read Date: June 19 2018
Genre: Fantasy / Retelling / Children’s book / Middle Grade / Anthology
In this stunning anthology, 15 favorite fairytales have been retold for the #metoo generation. These princesses are smart, funny, and kind, and can do anything they set their minds to. They are:
Snow White—champion of real beauty
Sleeping Beauty—specialist on sleeping disorders
Thumbelina—music producer and advocate
Belle the Brave—undercover agent
Elisabeth and the Wild Swans—fashion designer
Cinderella—prime minster and businesswoman
Star and the 12 Dancers—dancer
The Goose Girl—stand-up comedian
Princess Sevinah (and the Pea)—founder of the Fairyland Dating Service
The Snow Queen—winter sports coach
The Little Mermaid—advocate for peace between mer-people and humans
Zade—storyteller (of 1001 tales) and businesswoman
Evangeline (The Frog Princess)—natural historian
Little Red Riding Hood—environmentalist and Princess of the Wolves
Focused on issues including self-image, confidence, LGBTQ, friendship, advocacy, and disability, these stories are perfect for sharing between parents and children, or for older princesses or princes to read by themselves. They teach that a princess is a person who seeks to help others, is open to learning new things, and looks for ways to add purpose to their lives and the lives of those around them.
Power to the princess!
Beginning was great where author writes about idea of the book in creative way. At Noble Monarch Jubilee, a conference for the leaders from Fairy Tales where author meets princesses featured in this book who are tired of being recognized as marrying princes, wearing glass shoes and happily ever after ending. They want themselves to be recognized as they really are and so author writes their real stories in the book.
This book has one of the most beautiful table of content I ever seen in any picture book.
Oh, I loved the voice and tone in the stories. It was kid friendly, modern, and so enchanting. Princesses of the book were powerful in the real meaning. They were courageous, thinking about the greater good , some flawed who learned eventually, some had inner beauty, and they found their calling and worked to make fairyland kingdom better for all living creatures. They were police, leader and advocate, architect, business woman, sport organizer and coach, fashion designer, award- winning actress, dancer, musician, environmentalist, zoologist, beautician, running dating service, and partner in biggest enterprise of empire. Cool huh?
The book was full of inspiration and plethora of talents. I wonder after reading this book kids would have many career options to ponder on! 😉 Jokes apart, this book will truly inspire kids to find their own talent and motivate them to achieve their dreams. This book teaches good lessons without any scary villains, cruelty and any killings.
Some stories had most of the resemblance to the original tales and some were different or had very less resemblance. But what I liked about stories that that followed original tale, was the way author diverted them into something different with uniqueness that I first haven’t imagined possible. Illustrations were so wonderful. They kept all small details in mind. I could see diversities, disabled in wheelchair, inventions, different cultures, and modern clothing. Both author and illustrator truly woven these fairy tales for young readers of 21st century.
My personal favorite stories were-
Belle The Brave– it was retelling of Beauty and the Beast, in which few of the things were same as old story but the rest was very different. It talked about bravery and justice and Belle’s ability to see good in everything. Coolest thing was there wasn’t any villain, except one and I bet you won’t be able to guess who. Climax and end was great.
The Little Mermaid– This was cool. Our little mermaid, Marisha, wears tuxedo in this story. For a change, Marisha didn’t went up to surface for prince or marries a prince. She had a great leadership ability. I liked the focus of the story on waste disposal and its effect on environment and recycling.
Rapunzel– Now I loved that princesses and villain worked together. It doesn’t make story that thrilling but so lovely. Gothel was such a great character in the book. She was nice, smart, and soft hearted. Rapunzel and Gothel together made a great team. I loved the way story turned out.
Cinderella– For change, Ella quits working for mother and her two daughter in this tale which perked my interest to see how this story was going to turn out. It was very different from all retelling of Cinderella. I loved the way Ella started her business and sought to run it fairly and successfully, and loved the efforts she put to seek justice for workers. End was truly inspiring for young readers.
Zade and the 1001 Ideas – Totally different story! “Not all the princesses are born into royal leadership. Some climb up and claim it for themselves.” I loved this first line of the story. Zade’s tactics in this story to prevent Sultan from firing her was really great. This story truly told how well read and learned person can achieve their dreams with the knowledge. It was overall good story with loads of inventions that kids would love to read.
Little Red Riding Hood– I loved the way story retold by focusing on more important topics like forestry, environment conservations, care for wild animals, understanding their needs and make the environment safe to live for both humans and animals rather than scaring kids of woods and wolves. It was inspiring.
Sleeping Beauty– This had another great message about accepting the differences, being yourself and embrace the traits that make you different from others. I loved the way Aurora worked on her sleeping disorder not to remove curse but to live with it and spreading her learnings on sleeping disorder and the way people inspired from Aurora’s work.
Evangeline and the Frog Prince– This story was about not judging anyone or anything by looks, acquiring knowledge on various animals and discover new species. It was great to read how clumsy Evan found her interest and talents in animals. Oh, I’m extremely glad she didn’t have to kiss a frog in this retelling. 😉
I would have liked it even more if there was moral message quite visible like original stories along with these talents. In some stories I can see princesses working on their talents but no moral messages behind the story like it had with Little Red Riding Hood, The Little Mermaid, Sleeping Beauty, and Evangeline and the Frog Prince.
But of course, it was worth reading.
Overall, I just loved this retelling loaded with talents, inspiration, and beautiful illustrations. I definitely recommend this to all young readers.
Author: Vita Murrow
Illustrator: Julia Bereciartu
To know more about author and illustrator, check out publisher’s page for this book ⇒ Here.
*** Note: I received e-arc of this book via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review. Many thanks to publisher, author, and NetGalley. ***
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