The paper bag princess, by Robert N. Munsch (1945-)
I LOVE fractured fairytales, especially ones like The Paper Bag Princess! In this twisted fairytale, Elizabeth, the princess, is about to marry Prince Ronald. Unfortunately, a dragon smashes her castle (good timing, dragon) and burns all her clothes with his fiery breath. Somehow he doesn’t burn HER! But he does carry off her groom-to-be.
Elizabeth sets off on a quest to get her beloved back. She has nothing to wear, and so has to be contented with a paper bag. The dragon leaves a trail of burnt forests and horse’s bones, and so naturally is easy to follow. She finally comes to a cave with a large door (which is so obviously the dragon’s cave) with a knocker on it. She knocks. The dragon tells her that he does love princesses, but he has already eaten a whole castle and to come back tomorrow. (Wow. That dragon is not very smart).
Unlike the dragon, Elizabeth is a very smart princess, and tricks the dragon into falling asleep (out of pure exhaustation, actually. By the way – spoiler alert – that dragon is not only dumb, but also very proud). Elizabeth rushes into the castle to rescue her prince, to find he is only disgusted that she is wearing a paper bag and her hair is messy. Whereupon the princess quickly dumps him. (And about time too. I personally would not have put up with him for two seconds). They don’t get married after all.
I think this book is funny and relatable – I especially like the bit at the end when Elizabeth dumps Ronald, and calls him a bum!
Reviewed by Raya from Cummings Park and Raroa Normal Intermediate , 11 years old