Jane Yolen's latest picturebook, co-authored with Heidi Stemple, will be a welcome relief to parents suffering from the pink princess craze. A series of diverse girls indulge in decidedly un-princesslike behavior, from playing soccer to building treehouses, but prove they're still royalty by proudly wearing their crowns.
The rhymes are brisk and have a nice cadence for the most part, although the dancing scene is awkward "They waltz in red, fox-trot in blue/they reel in plaid and polka dots too./And in those grand and fancy halls,/one even hip-hops in her overalls. The activities portrayed are almost all active, including sports, construction, dancing, and various outside activities.
Anne-Sophie Lanquetin's illustrations are full of bright colors and her girls' wide eyes and swirling hair make an active accompaniment to the swinging rhymes. While most determined little pink princesses will cling firmly to their fancy dresses, the exuberant color and gigglicious activities should entice a sizable number into trying something a little different.
ISBN: 978-1416980186; Published June 2010 by Simon & Schuster; Review copy provided by the publisher through Raab Associates