Thank you @kidlitexchange for providing me with a copy of this book to read and review. All opinions are my own.
Princess Puliverizer (aka Princess Serena) doesn’t want to be a princess, she wants to be a knight. Unfortunately, she is stuck in etiquette classes and her attitude leaves something to be desired. After getting sent home from Princess School yet again, she tells her father that she wants to go to Knight School. Her father says no, but not because she is a girl but because he doesn’t think she has what it takes to actually be a knight – “great honor, kindness, and sacrifice.” Princess Serena only thinks of herself. So he tells her that she can go to Knight School if she completes a Quest of Kindness, performs 8 good deeds, and brings back proof of her accomplishments. Out in the real world, she struggles to find good things to actually help people.
I was incredibly excited to get my hands on a review copy of Princess Pulverizer – Grilled Cheese and Dragons because my 7 year old has been really enjoying the Katie Kazoo, Switcheroo series from Nancy Kulik. This book is definitely aimed at fans of The Princess in Black who are ready for something a bit longer. My daughter struggled to get into it, perhaps because Princess Pulverizer so vehemently didn’t want to be seen as a princess or a girly-girl, or perhaps just because she wasn’t in the mood on the day she tried. I think Princess Pulverizer has the potential to appeal to girls who think outside of the box.
In my own reading, I felt that the first half of the book struggled to get going, but once Princess Serena purposely convinces an ogre to capture her so she can return jewels the ogre has stolen, the book definitely picks up. Princess Serena has to problem solve and even meets two friends – Lucas, a failed knight-in-training who is afraid of most things, and Dribble, a fire breathing dragon who likes to use his fire to cook delicious meals instead of destroying villages. Together, she realizes that there are things that she needs to learn about being a knight, including how to work as a team. I appreciated that Princess Serena is very strong and sure of herself, but that she is also learning along the way that she doesn’t actually know everything and that she can’t exist completely on her own.
Since so many little girls are infatuated with princesses, we need more books that show that they can be a princess and be so much more than just a sweet girl who needs to be saved.