Thursday, June 19, 2014

BEA Early Reader Reviews: The Princess in Black

The four great early reader and middle grade books I got at BEA 2014. 

So, I decided to try and review my BEA books in some kind of order that actually made a little sense... both to me and hopefully to all of you! Since I've covered my picture books, the next few blog posts will all be about the early reader and middle grade books that I received at BEA, then we'll move on to some of the YA and adult titles. Enjoy!

The Princess in Black
by Shannon and Dean Hale 
Illustrated by LeUyen Pham 

This is the start of a brand-new book series following the brave and exciting adventures of Princess Magnolia, a perfectly proper princess by day, but when trouble raises its ugly, monster-shaped head, she ditches her flouncy dresses and glass slippers and becomes THE PRINCESS IN BLACK. (Description taken from

I begged for this little chapter book at BEA because I love Shannon Hale so much.  She writes some of the best fairy tale inspired books I've ever read.  This book is no exception and I just wish I had a little niece to give this book to...instead a lucky reader from our Library will get to win it as a prize this summer during our summer reading program!

This book truly embraces all the facets of little girls, and even boys (there is monster fighting and a goat boy who becomes a superhero, too, after all!).  Princess Magnolia is a girl who loves to wear pink dresses, drink tea, and behave quite the proper princess...until her monster alarm ring goes off.  Then she becomes "The Princess in Black" and goes off monster hunting like a real hero.  She doesn't need anyone to come to her rescue, she can do it all!  

This is such an empowering story. Not only because it tells girls that they can go out and fight their own battles, that they can be strong, but also because it lets them embrace the feminine side, too. Neither one is touted over the other and just because Princess Magnolia fights monsters, doesn't mean she doesn't love being a dainty girl sometimes, too!    

This is exactly the type of little girl that I was, dressing in perfect outfits for school and then rolling around in the mud having adventures after school.  I loved being both types of girl...the princess and the tomboy.   I know lots of little girls that love that freedom to be everything they want to be, as well.  

This book would be great to read at home, with a babysitter, or even as a classroom read-aloud for new readers.  I definitely recommend it! 

Full disclosure: Received from publisher at BEA 2014 

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