Princess, Princess Ever After
By: Katie Oneal
Oni Press (September, 2016)

Amira saves Sadie and her pet dragon, Oliver from a life of solitude in a tower. The princesses then go out in search of adventure as Amira looks for more people to help. When Sadie’s sister suspects she’s coming to claim her throne things turn for the worse and Sadie must put down her damsel crown and take up her hero sword.

You may know already, that I’m not a big graphic novel fan, but I found this to be so cute and refreshing. With a crisp feminist flare that highlights the constraints that patriarchy puts on boys and girls it also doesn’t skimp on the funny. The one-liners were witty and the plot changes plain delightful. It works as middle grades and even as a story-time picture book for those who are so inclined to split it over a few nights.

I love, love, love that the princesses don’t get married right away as they almost always do in traditional fairytales. The girls spend some time growing up and becoming better people. How can you not love that?

This book is a great gateway drug for those who are wary of stocking or suggesting LGBT comics. It’s as light and airy as soda bubbles and there really isn’t any room for anyone to object (though I’m sure someone will try).

This book is perfect for:
Parents looking for a longer form story-time option
Fairy-tale buffs
Graphic novel buffs looking for queer friendly representation

Discussion Questions:

  1. Sadie’s sister picks on her by calling her fat and a cry-baby, facts Sadie doesn’t deny. How has she let her sister’s opinion of her hold her back.
  2. Amira and Sadie don’t automatically get together in the end, they both go and learn to be a hero and a queen on their own. How does this ending differ from most fairy tales?
  3. Butthead is forced into hero work by his family. How does his plight align with the girls’?
  4. Amira runs away from her family and Sadie lets hers control her, discuss the motivations around their decisions.
If you like this try:
Nimona by Noelle Stevenson is about Nimona, a kick-ass curvy super-villain assistant.

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