Title: The Cherry Pie Princess
Author: Vivian French
Illustrator: Marta Kissi
Publisher: Walker Books
Genre: Children’s Fiction
Book format: Paperback
Description: Princess Peony has a bad feeling that her father might be a tyrant. She doesn’t want to believe it, but he has a nasty habit of throwing people in dungeons…
There’s a royal party coming up, and the king’s in an even worse mood than usual. He flat out refuses to invite the wicked hag, which can mean only one thing: TROUBLE!
*Free copy provided by publisher for review…
Review: This is a very fun story for kids and one which I would have adored reading myself when I was younger. Princess Peony is different to her family, the King, Queen and her six sisters. During a Royal visit to the library Princess Peony, the only one of her sisters to show any interest in the books there, borrows a recipe book. But Princesses aren’t supposed to bake and when her father King Thoroughgood finds out, it is only the start of Princess Peony’s troubles.
‘The Cherry Pie Princess’ is well written and really fun. It’s like a new fairy tale story with a bit of humour thrown in. It’s easy to get into this children’s book right away and although it is not a specifically funny book, the names of some characters and the illustrations inside will make you smile and laugh. The story is quite simple but surprised me as I didn’t know what was going to happen. Although the story follows Princess Peony at the beginning it also briefly follows some seemingly random characters like the Fairy Godmothers and a Hag. All these characters stories later entwine to make a really good ending.
The illustrations are funny and have enough detail for me to really like them. There are illustrations throughout the book, in black and white and there’s are illustrations on every other double page. The pictures really lend to the story and are really well drawn, I especially like the image later of the cat sitting in the tree. The ending of the story is a really good one and even though it’s predictably happy, I still didn’t know how everything would get resolved or what would happen to Princess Peony after a spell was cast! (can’t say more or I’d spoil it!).
I think kids will love this story, particularly if they are into fairy tales and although girls might be more inclined to enjoy this book, given the title and the cover, I’m sure some boys would too as Peony herself isn’t overly girly in her personality. Adults might also enjoy it as I did. I’d definitely recommend this book to others, given the fact it’s like a fairy tale it also has a little lesson that some characters have to learn but it’s all told in a really fun way and I’ll certainly be on the lookout for more Vivian French books after I’ve read this one!
-Review first appeared online May 2017 – now republished here.
What do you think of this book? Have you read any other books by the author? What do you think of the illustrations? Let me know what you think in the comments below 🙂