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The Princess Rules by Philippa Gregory

Updated: Dec 11, 2022

Princess Florizella may live in a classic fairy-tale world, but she’s no ordinary princess…

When I first saw that Philippa Gregory had written a children's book, I'll put my hands up and admit that I was a little sceptical. When I think of Phlippa Gregory I think Queen of Historical Fiction, I don't think fairytales and princesses and giants and dragons. But then I read that The Princess Rules is a new and fresh reimaging of Gregory's original Princess Florizella, published in 1989 and dedicated to her daughter.

Gregory writes, 'I thought it was time to republish Princess Florizella – my darling counter-Cinderella heroine. But when I re-read it, I realised that I wanted to rewrite it completely and here it is: The Princess Rules. In it, I imagine that there is a code of mad behaviour which Princesses are required to follow, but my heroine Florizella decides that she is going to ignore. How does a sporty, spirited, funny girl fit into a world which has unfair expectations which would limit and contain her? She finds her own way, and she explains her path to her parents and her friend Prince Bennet. We are all princesses breaking the Princess Rules.'

Quirky, enchanting and utterly fun, Gregory has successfully stripped back the stereotypical princess to reveal one seriously fierce and feisty heroine who abides by no rules and no prince charmings! I loved Florizella! I loved her sense of freedom, her feminist streak and her forthright nature and I even loved her flaws. It's always refreshing to read of fairytales with a feminist twist and this one doesn't fall short of perfect.

Written across three fantastic short stories (think wolves, giants and the biggest jelly trifle ever!), Gregory tackles the conventional faiytale and in turn sprinkles moments of thrilling adventures, headstrong decisions and rule breaking fun which new readers will find confidence in reading aloud.

Beautifully crafted with charming monochrome illustrations by Chris Chatterton throughout, The Princess Rules will no doubt inspire a whole new generation of readers.



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