This book is one in a series of girl-empowerment books by Carmela LaVigna Coyle, designed to let little girls know that yes, indeedy, princesses can do whatever they please, and that being a princess has nothing to do with outside trappings, but with inside feelings. Feelings of goodness and worthiness, mind you – not entitlement, beauty or putting on airs.
Cole says she was inspired to write this book after her daughter asked her the title question. It is written for pre-school level, so be prepared for the cute, whimsical rhyming. The text consists of a mother’s rhymed answers to her daughter’s questions about princesses, such as, “When princesses laugh, do they sometimes snort? They have manners of every sort.”
What’s great about these stories is that they expand the idea of what it means to be completely and fully all of who you are – that self-esteem is based on accepting and loving you exactly as you are – the same message inherent in everything here at PersonalGrowthPrincess.com. Considering how many messages girls (and women) get about not being good enough, not being worthy, and, of course, that being pretty is what counts, this book is a wonderful counter-message.
Here’s a snippet from Carmela LaVigna Coyle’s biography:
“Hmmmm. An uncommon princess!? What’s that all about… well it’s about YOU!! And who you are on the inside. I wrote my first “published” book for my daughter Annie after she asked me the title question. “Do princesses wear hiking boots?” We were getting ready to go on a hike in the Rocky’s when she plopped down next to me wearing denim coveralls, a pink sparkling tutu, an old t-shirt, mismatching socks and a crown askew on her head. Before I could answer her question, she fired a second one; “Do princesses have to brush their teeth?” and then a third. (Can you believe it? Hand-fed a storybook title by a four-year-old? Happens all the time, I am told.) Quickly I discovered that she was trying to learn if she, herself, could possibly qualify as a princess.
The princess in my princess series climb trees, ride bikes-fast, plays soccer, dresses up (on occasion,) does chores, and loves to be outside in nature. Sound familiar? A princess doesn’t have to be fluffy and frilly to be the real deal… unless, of course, you like that sort of thing. Anything goes, my dears. “…A princess is a place in your heart.” And the best part? You decide what that is! Or not!”
I’m always drawn to these books, in part because of all the anti-princess messages I heard growing up (along with the “not yet worthy” ones), but also because of how they can impact grown women as well. Some members of Personal Growth Princess tell me that initially they were not drawn to the name of the program, because of the word “princess”, but once they read more about it and understood they were reacting from the negative conditioning they received as young girls, they jump on board. There’s something liberating about being able to think “princess” without thinking “wimpy”.
There are other books in the series, which seems to have become a runaway hit: Do Princesses Really Kiss Frogs? and Do Princesses Scrape Their Knees? and other titles. The rumors are the latest book in the series, Do Princesses Have Best Friends Forever?, will be out near the end of the year.
What messages did you receive about who you were as a child? And was it OK to be interested in princesses? Could you kick butt and be girly?
Leave a comment below and share your thoughts.