Review of Princess Sparkle-Heart Gets a Makeover, by Josh Schneider

princess_sparkle_heart_largePrincess Sparkle-Heart Gets a Makeover

by Josh Schneider

Clarion Books, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Boston, 2014. 32 pages.
Starred Review

I’m not sure if girls looking for a princess book will be delighted or appalled with this one, but I’m hoping delighted. When Amelia is given a doll named Princess Sparkle-Heart, they instantly become best friends. So much so, that her dog is jealous. And when he gets the chance, he rips Princess Sparkle-Heart to pieces.

However, Amelia’s mother promises that she can put Princess Sparkle-heart back together, good as new. During the process, we get hints of what is going to happen. Amelia asks for extra stuffing, as muscles, for protection. She has a hard time picking just two buttons for eyes. She wants Princess Sparkle-Heart to have some good teeth.

But the biggest giveaway, I didn’t even notice on my first time through the book.

All that was left was to find Princess Sparkle-Heart some new clothes. Amelia gathered up all the magazines in the house and looked for just the right outfit.

We see Amelia looking at a spread-out array of magazines titled Fancy, with someone posing in a fancy outfit on the cover. What I didn’t notice the first time is that right in the middle of the magazines, Amelia is looking at an issue called Kapow featuring a superhero.

The final result? Let’s just say this is not what comes to my mind when I hear the name “Princess Sparkle-Heart.” And that dog will not be messing with her again. Though the end page shows a happy scene with Amelia playing with the dog, with the new improved Princess Sparkle-Heart by her side.

There’s a message of empowerment here. Now, it does beg the question: Does empowerment have to be ugly? But anyway, the story is a lot of fun. And believe me, my describing Princess Sparkle-Heart’s makeover will not diminish the thrill of discovery when she first appears in her full madeover glory.

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Source: This review is based on a library book from Fairfax County Public Library.

Disclaimer: I am a professional librarian, but I maintain my website and blogs on my own time. The views expressed are solely my own, and in no way represent the official views of my employer or of any committee or group of which I am part.

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