When an enchantress becomes godmother to a King and Queen’s baby daughter, she wonders how she can help her become a really excellent princess. Th enchantress consults her servants but their standard responses, about beauty and kindness do not satisfy her. Her magic mirror is particularly unhelpful. The enchantress decides to take action and transforms her magic mirror into a pocket-sized version sending it on a mission to be her eyes and ears to find out what really makes an excellent princess.
There follow eight stories about extraordinary princesses the mirror encounters on its travels, through history from ancient civilizations to the present day and across the world from desert lands to an ancient city in the mountains, fishing villages, a tower block and the high seas. The stories are linked together as the mirror is lost or given away by its owner and awaits a new home in the next chapter.
The mirror did indeed step into the lives of remarkable princesses who challenged stereotypes: whether setting sail to rescue a stranded sailor, standing up for people they care about, or finding ways to save a city memorial garden. The mirror finds out that what these princesses have in common is that they are brave, fierce and loyal with big dreams and big hearts.
The stories are beautifully written in traditional fairy tale style with delightful imagery, for example one ‘princess’ who makes clothes from cast offs says wearing them feels like being ‘wrapped in stories.’ This is a beautifully presented book containing attractive and elegant colour illustrations throughout including a full-page illustration and decorative title page to introduce each new princess and their story.
A book which would make a lovely gift, particularly for young readers keen to discover that princesses do not need to wait for princes to fight their battles or sweep them off their feet.