Some books are simply beautiful. There is no other way to describe them. Just glancing at them makes you smile and fills your chest with a comforting warmth. You can’t help but smile when you flip through their pages.
Often, these beautiful books are illustrated children’s books, picture books. And yet, they have so much to offer adults as well. Sometimes the illustrations are gorgeous. Sometimes the style of the book, the smoothness of the paper or the fabric-wrapped spine are elegant. Sometimes the story itself is exquisitely lovely.
And sometimes, a book is beautiful because of all of these things.
The Princess in Black
is one of these beautiful books.
I stumbled upon this book a few years ago and had to buy it. A girl who loves pretty dresses AND who is a superhero who can ride and sneak and get dirty with the most rambunctious of characters?! Yes, please!
This book is a lovely example of how we can communicate to girls (and boys) that it is totally okay to be feminine and like “girly” things and at the same time like to run and play and solve mysteries and fight monsters.
Princess Magnolia is having hot chocolate and scones with Duchess Wigtower when . . . Brring! Brring! The monster alarm! A big blue monster is threatening the goats! Stopping monsters is no job for dainty Princess Magnolia. But luckily Princess Magnolia has a secret —she’s also the Princess in Black, and stopping monsters is the perfect job for her! Can the princess sneak away, transform into her alter ego, and defeat the monster before the nosy duchess discovers her secret? From award-winning writing team of Shannon and Dean Hale and illustrator LeUyen Pham, here is the first in a humorous and action-packed chapter book series for young readers who like their princesses not only prim and perfect, but also dressed in black. (from Goodreads)
There are now a whole ton of these books (#5 just came out) and they are a great bridge between picture books and more advanced chapter books for young readers.
The Princess in Black books are by Shannon Hale and Dean Hale, and are illustrated by LeUyen Pham.