I'm not afraid to admit it- I'm a little obsessed with Princess Hyacinth: The Surprising Tale of a Girl Who Floated. It may just be the most clever story ever, and truthfully, I am surprised I haven't heard more about it because I think this is one of the most adorable stories we have on our shelves. I'm so in love with everything about it- the narrative, the illustrations, but most especially, the way my big one reacts with such wonder to the narrative.
In this book, Princess Hyacinth has a most unusual problem. Unless she is weighed down by her heaviest princess attire and jewels, she floats right up to the sky! This causes some anguish, obviously, as her clothes are uncomfortable and she longs to be able to play on the palace grounds like other children. One day, on a walk in all of her weighty gear, she comes across a balloon man outside, and that's when Princess Hyacinth comes up with an idea that might just be a game changer.
The illustrations in this story are such a wonderful supplement to the text, and the little Princess's expressions just make you want to carry her around in your pocket all day for whenever you need some cheering up. I love the use of white space and the text layout, both of which make the reader feel like the text may just float right off the page. And let's not forget to mention the organic (and often irreverent way) both the text and illustrations elicit such giggles - the joy the princess feels when she is floating with the balloons is palpable. Most importantly, though, I absolutely adore Princess Hyacinth's ingenuity. She recognizes she has a one-of-a-kind characteristic, and though she is often frustrated both by this trait and her parent's constant desire to "fix" it, she eventually comes to not just accept her difference, but to embrace it. And when she does, magic happens as a wondrous new world opens up for her. Absolutely fantastic, and such a great story to read with little ones who may struggle with accepting their own unique character traits.
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