Reviews for Princess Stories from Around the World

Booklist Reviews 2008 August #1
From the rosy pink that dominates the jacket art to the sparkly foil that announces the book's title and spangles the princess' crown, hair, and dress with stars, the cover art of this sturdy paperback is designed to attract girls who love to read princess tales and their younger sisters who love to hear them. The choice and presentation of the stories will not disappoint: “The Frog Prince,” “The Golden Touch,” “The Kingdom under the Sea,” “The Pigman and the Princess,” “The Lemon Princess,” “Popocateptl and the Princess,” and “Kate Crackernuts.” Though there are no notes identifying the tales' sources, the retellings themselves are lively and engaging. Going beyond the usual European selections, Tym includes tales from Japan and Mexico. The book's large format gives ample scope for Williams' lovely, fluid illustrations, which appear on nearly every page. An entertaining collection of traditional tales featuring princesses: the good, the bad, and the magical. Copyright 2006 Booklist Reviews.

Publishers Weekly Reviews 2008 June #5

All princesses are not alike. Some are clever, some are spoiled, some are loyal, some are even ugly--so readers learn in Tym's collection of seven familiar folk and fairy tales from different cultures. The title is slightly misleading in that not every story stars a princess (Does the tale of King Midas, who turns his beloved daughter into lifeless gold, qualify?). Tym narrates in a chatty, occasionally arch voice, generously sprinkled with "believe me" and "I think you'd agree," and she often addresses the reader directly: "Are you with me so far?" The British spellings, turns of phrase and sentence structure immediately peg this book as an import (it was first published in the U.K.). Williams's soft, highly romanticized illustrations, featuring many flowing-haired girls in long gowns, can be an odd match for the sometimes vinegary tone ("Sometimes, good looks, royal blood and pots of money are a recipe for only one thing--a spoilt little madam"). However, the lushness of the many full-spread pictures and ample vignettes exert an undeniable charm. Ages 7-9. (Aug.)

[Page 184]. Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.

School Library Journal Reviews 2008 December

Gr 2-5--From Japan's seas to the Aztecs' lands, seven traditional tales are vividly retold, including the classic "The Frog Prince" and "The Golden Touch." In "The Pigman and the Princess," a shallow royal humorously receives her comeuppance. "Kate Crackernuts" introduces two princesses, two princes, and one conniving queen, and "The Lemon Princess" features Eastern enchantment. Several selections capture the despair over lost love, including "The Kingdom Under the Sea." The subdued hues, featured in double-page illustrations and vignettes, serve to separate the selections. Soft lines add to the stories' moods. The author is a strong storyteller, personally engaging readers. She foreshadows the impending grief in "Popocatepetl and the Princess": "Sometimes, a story is sad enough to make you shed a tear but beautiful enough to make you hold it in your heart for ever-I hope you will agree that this is a story like that." Through rich language, these selections are well suited for reading aloud or independently. Unfortunately, there are no sources.--Meg Smith, Cumberland County Public Library, Fayetteville, NC

[Page 116]. Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.