Review: The Real Princess Diaries by Grace Norwich

Middle Grade Madness

The Real Princess Diaries by Grace Norwich

This inside look at real-life princesses will explore the true and often inspiring stories behind happily ever after.

A deep dive into the royal world of a princess! Featuring princesses from around the world and all of time. The Real Princess Diaries explores everything it means to be royal. Each spread includes portraits of the princesses, in-depth bios, crowning achievements, and family trees. Learn which princesses have official royal duties, and which ones simply reign. Plus bonus sidebars about ladies in waiting, the crowned jewels, royal outfits, and princes, this will be the definitive royal guide. Full-color photos, with a modern layout make this a must read for princess fans everywhere.

Title: The Real Princess Diaries
Author: Grace Norwich
Publication date: August 25, 2015

I received an ARC of The Real Princess Diaries from Scholastic in exchange for an honest review.

With a teen magazine-style format, The Real Princess Diaries is packed with full-color illustrations, artwork, and photographs, the usual names/dates/places you would find in any book on history, “royally cool facts,” and royal achievements. There are sections on royal weddings, royal pets, royal fashion and hairstyles, and even jobs that the princesses have held in addition to or prior to their royal duties. There’s even a two page spread highlighting eligible princes, just in case a commoner reader wants to be come a princess herself.

While the book includes more princess of England through the ages than those from anywhere else, the array of princess does range from ones I’ve never heard of (Sirivannavari of Thailand) to those I studied in school (Marie Antionette), to those making headlines today (Beatrice and Eugenie), from ancient (Hatshepsut of Egypt who lived c. 1508 BCE – 1458 BCE) to modern (Masako of Japan, born in 1963). Some of the princess were born into their positions; some married into them. Most, even the early ones like Mary Tudor, were well-educated.

The Real Princess Diaries is colorful and makes learning about a small part of history fun. It’s a short book (only 95 pages and much of that is not text) and easy to read. I like history and have had a lot more years to do research than the middle grade target demographic for this book, so I’ve already read about a lot of the princesses, even some of the more modern ones, but like I mentioned earlier, there were some I was unfamiliar with. I think the book will encourage readers who enjoy the brief details here to explore the princesses, their lives and times, and their cultures more deeply.

4 stars