Over the weekend I came across an interview with Jeremy Whitley, author of the Princeless series, that could not have come at a better time for me. I was craving a fun, humorous read, and everything in my to-read pile right now is pretty dark. A few paragraphs into the interview I decided I HAD to read Princeless now. The idea of a black princess saving herself and teaming up with her dragon guard to save her sister was way too appealing to pass up. I devoured the first two volumes in one sitting.
There are so many awesome things happening in these graphic novels. The discussion of armor designed for women that actually works as armor. The examination of gender roles, status, and societal expectations. The way the author and artist both point out and subvert so many stereotypes surrounding the traditional princess story tropes. I loved seeing Angelica, the “beautiful” sister; Devin, the prince who isn’t “manly” enough for his father; and King Ash share pieces of their stories, so we understood how they came to be the characters they are. There was definite potential for this series to go over the top with cheesy stereotypes, but the creators deftly avoid that. I highly recommend the Princeless series for fans of princess stories and superhero stories. I’d love to see more comics like these geared toward kids.