Book Tour
Book Title:
The Prince and the Dressmaker
Book Author:
Jen Wang
Book Illustrator:
Jen Wang
Page Count:
288
Publishing Date:
February 13th, 2018
Publisher:
First Second
Date Read:
January 31st, 2018
Source:
I received a copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review - Thank you!

Synopsis

Paris, at the dawn of the modern age:

Prince Sebastian is looking for a bride―or rather, his parents are looking for one for him. Sebastian is too busy hiding his secret life from everyone. At night he puts on daring dresses and takes Paris by storm as the fabulous Lady Crystallia―the hottest fashion icon in the world capital of fashion!

Sebastian’s secret weapon (and best friend) is the brilliant dressmaker Frances―one of only two people who know the truth: sometimes this boy wears dresses. But Frances dreams of greatness, and being someone’s secret weapon means being a secret. Forever. How long can Frances defer her dreams to protect a friend? Jen Wang weaves an exuberantly romantic tale of identity, young love, art, and family. A fairy tale for any age, The Prince and the Dressmaker will steal your heart.

My Review

I love graphic novels, and when you combine a graphic novel with a fantasy/fairy tale theme, I find that it becomes something that I love so much I don’t even know how to put it into words!  There is so much going on in this book to make it so easy to love, and Jen Wang’s incredible talent really stands out and makes this book something out of a dream.

Frances isn’t treated very well at her current job, where she listens to the client and designs a beautiful dress, only to have her boss ready to fire her over it.  When someone shows up looking for her and offering her a job as a private seamstress, Frances jumps on it and is led away to a fancy castle to meet who she will be tailoring to.

Except the person who has hired her to design dresses isn’t at all who she was expecting – in fact, it is the prince – Sebastian.

Sebastian enjoys wearing dresses, and has taken some of the queen’s dresses to wear on occasion, but has never told anyone that he does this, for fear of being judged, since he is the prince and his parents, the king and queen, are trying to set him up with a woman to marry and make the princess.  However, when Frances meets Sebastian, and starts designing dresses for him, he realizes that they are way too beautiful to not wear out – so he comes up with a new name for himself – Lady Crystallia, and instantly becomes the fashion statement of the kingdom.

Hoping this can be her chance to break into the fashion world as a designer, Frances encourages Lady Crystallia to talk fashion with some of the influential people in the industry, but then the truth will be discovered about Sebastian, and fear over consequences makes things strained between them.

The first thing I noticed about this book and fell in love with it from the start is the charming artwork that Jen Wang has illustrated on each and every page.  Each panel is a treat, with so much emotion and beautiful detail being poured into it.

The second thing I loved about this book is the beautiful, heartwarming story that lies within its pages.  It’s a fairy tale that is perfect for everyone, with an uplifting message that is perfect for anyone of any age.  It’s a story that encourages you to be yourself and to be honest about it.  It’s a story that says it’s okay to be a little different.  It’s a story that tells you that those who really matter will always love you no matter what.  It’s a timely, perfect tale that will appeal to a wide audience.


Favorite Panel

I chose this panel as my favorite in the entire book, because it’s the first time that the dressmaker, Frances, really gets a good look at Prince Sebastian, learning his true identity and that she will be making dresses for him.

I think this is an important scene because even though she is somewhat surprised, there is no judgement, and she is happy to get to know him and design the dresses that he asks for.

I also love the look of surprise on Frances’ face, as well as the prince’s face.  There is so much detail in this panel, and the entirety of their relationship is based on this one moment when Frances learns the truth.

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Jen Wang is a cartoonist and illustrator currently living in Los Angeles. Her works have appeared in the Adventure Time comics and LA Magazine. She recently illustrated Tom Angleberger’s Fake Mustache.  Her graphic novels Koko Be Good and In Real Life (with author Cory Doctorow) were published by First Second. jenwang.net

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12 Responses to The Prince and the Dressmaker by Jen Wang

  1. Those images are so fantastic! I just learned about this book recently and I am all over it. I am so glad that you enjoyed it so much. I can’t wait to check it out myself. 🙂

  2. Brittany says:

    Aww this book looks so cute and charming! I’m so glad you enjoyed it 🙂 Thank you for sharing your thoughts!

    Brittany @ Brittany’s Book Rambles

  3. Raven says:

    Great Review! This sounds like a cute read and the illustrations looks pretty good too! I’m glad you loved it! Adding it to my TBR! 🙂
    Raven recently posted…V Games: Fresh From The Grave (The V Games Trilogy #2) By Caroline Peckham [Review]My Profile

  4. Cecelia says:

    Love this panel! It was moment of delicious tension.

  5. This looks like such a great read! I love those illustrations and have not read anything like it before. Thanks so much for sharing!

  6. Ah, I am just SO EXCITED for this book and I want my preordered copy to arrive already! I love everything that you mentioned in your review, and I cannot wait to read those elements on page with those beautiful illustrations. I am so incredibly grateful for the existence of this graphic novel, and can only hope to see more like it in the future. Thank you for the lovely review, Kelly, and I’m so glad you liked this one 😀
    Chiara @ Books for a Delicate Eternity recently posted…Books I Never Want to See AdaptedMy Profile

    • Kelly says:

      Yay! I can’t wait to see what you think about this one! It’s the kind of book that you can read and then set it down for five minutes before wanting to dive into it again. And again!

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