Sidsworth offers a debut picture book about a pink princess who learns a lesson about not always getting what she wants.
When Princess Pamela is born, the queen dresses her in only one color, because “all baby girls should wear pink.” They soon discover that Pamela has developed an excessive fondness for pink; in fact, she won’t accept anything in her life that isn’t that color, including toys, clothes, furniture, flowers and even food. At the age of 3, Pamela announces that she wants a pink puppy, and her parents decide they must find a way to satisfy this absurd request. The entire kingdom tries to help, and in the end, a witch delivers a pink puppy in return for gold. Pamela stops crying and all is well—until she demands a pink horse. A similar search ensues, and the same witch delivers. Pamela delights in her new pony, until a rainstorm comes and washes away the pink coloring, revealing a brown-and-white horse. The king and queen brace themselves for more tears, but to their shock, Pamela realizes that she loves her pony no matter what color he is. In the end, she finally learns that pink isn’t always the answer. The text is simple but not overly so, striking a balance between being manageable and challenging for young readers. The layout’s variety makes for a visually appealing presentation, and the pink capital letters used to begin each page fit perfectly with the overall theme. The book’s lesson is a good one, teaching children that sometimes they need to open their minds to the unexpected. Pamela, however, often comes across as spoiled, and her parents, as overly indulgent. Although Pamela learns her lesson, the ending feels a little too easy, particularly after the story spends so much time setting up Pamela’s obsession with pink and her difficult attitude. The art is full of appealing, cheerful colors, and the cover illustration is brilliant; however, many of the illustrations are drawn in a childlike fashion, particularly those of people and animals. Such images may appeal to young readers, but they also may give the impression of a lack of artistic sophistication.
An often fun, if simplistic, princess story.