Thanks to The Bookbag for their lovely review of Princess Disgrace. SO proud to be mentioned alongside Jill Murphy’s fabulous Worst Witch books!
We all know how princesses are supposed to be, don’t we? Pretty, dainty, delicate and feminine, with perfect manners and charm, of course. Unfortunately, it seems that nobody pointed this out to Princess Grace of Cragland; a scruffy, grubby, ungainly girl with spindly legs and huge feet. Her clumsiness earns her the nickname ‘Princess Dis-Grace’ from her fellow classmates, including her obnoxious cousin, Princess Precious. Can Grace rise to the challenge and become the well-groomed, elegant princess that she is expected to be in her first term at Tall Towers?
Reading this story reminded me of my childhood, when my favourite books were the Worst Witch series. Grace is very similar to the character of Mildred, whilst the vindictive Princess Precious is just like her nemesis, Ethel Hallow. Much of the humour in the book revolves around Grace’s inability to conform and the way that her clumsy nature and unladylike appearance clash with the school expectations of what it means to be a princess.
Despite its light-hearted exterior, the book gently addresses some serious issues. Bullying is a major theme in the story and at one point, the bullying turns physical, with one girl hitting a classmate and deliberately causing an accident that hurts another. The book also has a strong and positive message for young girls about being true to yourself and being happy with who you are; Grace may be a bit rough around the edges, but the story shows that her kind and caring nature make her more of a princess than her snobbish, condescending classmates.
The book is beautifully illustrated by Kimberly Scott, and the characters all look exactly how I expected them to. I also loved the peach-munching unicorns and how each unicorn matched the personality of its rider.
Hopefully, the book will be part of a series, as I would love to find out what happens to Grace in her next term at Tall Towers Princess Academy.
If you like Princess DisGrace then you will LOVE The Worst Witch to the Rescue by Jill Murphy