THE PRINCESS AND THE DRAGON
A Fractured Fairy Tale
by Marjorie Bayes
Illustrated by Agnes Villeda
Meet the incompetent dragon and the princess who doesn’t marry the prince! The princess is tired of rescuing princes, but agrees to go the aid of a prince who has been captured by a dragon. She finds that the dragon is required by the Department of Dragons Rules and Regulations to present her with three impossible tasks, which she does in her own way, in spite of the dragon’s complaints.
In this humorous departure from traditional “helpless princess” tales, the authoritative princess of color and the irritable dragon figure out how to work together to solve problems, while finding each other annoying. In an unlikely partnership they deal first with the captured prince, then with issues of air pollution and a war, even though the princess is impatient and the dragon is not particularly competent.
This is a cute, and at forty pages, short chapter book which takes the normal fairy tale princess and gives her a lovely douse of independence and spunk.
The princess in this book isn't the type which sits around a castle wearing pink fluffy dresses, but is one who is constantly called upon to save all those princes who keep gettin themselves caught by dragons. The way she marches off, a bit irritated, to save the next prince is simply a delight. She's logical, a little impatient, and not scared to say what she thinks...although she does realize at times that it's perhaps better to word things carefully.
Her spunk brings her head long into a dragon, who wants to follow the rules but realizes these rules don't necessarily help to him to reach the desired end. It's a treat to watch him try to stick to things as while bending with the princess to get things to work out.
The friendship between the two is a back-and-forth enjoyment. They don't always see eye to eye, and the way they talk around each other and the topics at hand, is sure to make the reader laugh. But still, they work together and get the job done.
The illustrations are simple but bright. There are quite a few of them peppered into each chapter, which is always nice to see.
The writing might be a bit difficult for early readers and would better fit children toward the end of second grade. But I see this as a perfect read-aloud for kids ages three and up.
Summed up, this is a collection of stories with a fun princess and dragon, which has the feeling of a traditional fairy tale while adding modern girl attitude and lots of humor. Although kids ages 4+ can read this on their own, I recommend it as a read aloud and believe kids ages 3+ would truly enjoy the chapter as a good night read before heading off into the land of dreams.
More about the author. . .
More about the illustrator. . .