Friday, January 31, 2020

Review - Princess Kevin

Princess Kevin
by Michaël Escoffier
illustrated by Roland Garrigue
Date: 2020
Publisher: Frances Lincoln Children's Books
Reading level: C
Book type: picture book
Pages: 32
Format: e-book
Source: NetGalley

This year, Kevin is going to the school costume show as a princess. His costume is perfect but he knows that the best costumes are authentic. So he is outraged that none of the knights will partner with him and complete the look. Things don't go quite a smoothly as he planned. Next year, there is only one thing for it. He will just have to be something even more fabulous.

This is a heartwarming and funny story about imagination, diversity and persevering at expressing your fabulous self.

(synopsis from Goodreads)

Kevin really doesn't care what the other kids think. He just wants to be a princess for his school's costume show. He comes up with a great princess costume, complete with high heels and makeup. There's just one thing missing: a knight. But none of the boys want to be Kevin's knight in shining armour. In fact, the only kid who seems to "get" Kevin is Chloe, who is supposedly dressed as a dragon (but looks more like a sock thanks to her dad's lack of costuming abilities). By the end of the day, Kevin's kind of had enough of being a princess, but not because of what anyone else thinks. Who thought high heels were a good idea, anyway? So when it comes time to think of what he's going to be the next year, he decides to keep it simple (while still apparently not giving a hoot what anyone else thinks).

Themes of bravery, friendship, and smashing gender norms are woven throughout this amusing story about a little boy who just wants to be a princess. After all, he reasons, girls can be cowboys and knights... so why can't he be a princess? It's probably pretty rare to find a kid who's either this oblivious or who just doesn't care about the opinions of others... but I kind of like that he's written that way. It shows kids that it's okay to dress up in the costume you really like, even if some of the other kids don't understand your choice.

The illustrations are amusing. Chloe really does look like a sock. And it's fun to see all the other costumes that Kevin's class is wearing.

This is definitely a book to check out if you're looking for titles that feature themes of diversity and standing up for yourself. It will probably also find an audience with readers who love dressing up as much as Kevin does.

Thank you to NetGalley and Frances Lincoln Children's Books for providing a digital ARC.

Premise: 4/5
Meter: n/a
Writing: 3/5
Illustrations: 3/5
Originality: 4/5

Enjoyment: 4/5

Overall: 3.67 out of 5

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