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Fairytales with a twist

These picture books have magically reinvented the traditional fairytales…

Posted: 3 April 2012
by Kimberley Chen

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Princess Smartypants by Babette Cole (Puffin, £6.99)

Princess Smartypants is not like the usual breed of vacuous, simpering princesses. No, she loves being a Ms and all that this entails – namely wearing muddy wellies, hanging out with dragon-like creatures and riding a very sleek and cool motorbike. But queues of princes are lining up to offer proposals of marriage which will surely thwart her gloriously independent life. Princess Smartypants must use her brains to stop these silly Princes’ dreams from becoming a reality. Readers will delight in the highly appropriate names of each character: like Prince Vertigo who fails at the task of climbing up a tall, glass tower, and Prince Grovel who literally ends up on his knees. Yellow-eyed and toothy monsters constantly snigger at the ineffectual princes, and you’ll be joining in with the laughter too.

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