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PRINCESS NINA by Michel Rodrique


From the Sybil the Backpack Fairy series, volume 4

by Michel Rodrique ; illustrated by Antonello Dalena ; Cecilia Giumento

Age Range: 8 - 10

Pub Date: June 18th, 2013
ISBN: 978-1-59707-415-5
Publisher: Papercutz

Trapped in a textbook, Nina, a purple-haired Everygirl, and her turquoise-tressed fairy friend, Sibyl, take an impromptu tour through history.

It’s all the fault of blonde mean girl Laurie and her malicious, ash-topped sprite, Amanite, who cop the book and riffle the pages while Sibyl is conducting Nina on a field trip to Napoleon’s coronation. This propels Nina into quick encounters with Napoleon and Josephine, Leonardo da Vinci, the French Revolution’s deadly “Madame Sans-Gêne” and Pharaoh Rameses, along with various attacking monsters. Worse, she might miss Laurie’s high-fashion costume party. The sequential panels are cramped and stuffed with partially seen figures and snarky dialogue, but the big-eyed main characters (particularly Nina, who resembles a punk Dora the Explorer) are easy enough to track by their hair colors. Thanks to Sibyl’s loyal gremlin, Pandigole, Nina escapes captivity at last and, clad in dazzling ancient Egyptian garb, makes a splashy entrance at the party to whirl hunky new classmate Antoine out of the clutches of her fuming nemesis.

Middle schoolers saddled with mean girls of their own will glory in this one’s comeuppance. It wouldn’t be such a bad thing to have personal fairies to help with homework, either. (Graphic fantasy. 8-10)