My rating: 5 of 5 stars
First Published: February 13th, 2018
Publisher: First Second Books
Recommended Age: 11+
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Graphic Novel, LGBT, Fashion, Historical Setting, Friendship
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.
This is the graphic novel I had no idea I was waiting for these past twenty years of my life. I have always loved stories about princes and princesses and kings and queens and lavish dresses—no wonder I couldn’t put this down.
I don’t want to speak too soon… Oh hell, I can already see this one winning Best Graphic Novel in December 2018 when the Goodreads Choice Awards makes its appearance once again. And if that doesn’t happen, I will consider protesting. Unless, of course, something better gets published—as if. Well look at that, mama bear has come out to protect her babies.
Prince Sebastian has a scandalous secret: By day, he is the son of the King of Belgium who must act accordingly and, unfortunately, find a princess to marry in order to form a fortunate alliance. But by night, he becomes Lady Crystallia, a fashionable woman who creates trends and is the light of any event.
All thanks to Frances, Sebastian’s new dressmaker who can transform a boring fabric into a magic dress. Frances knows the prince’s secret, but she is the only one, and that is how it shall remain, or else he might lose this side of him forever. After all, who wants a prince who wears dresses? (I do.)
I wasn’t that fan of Jen Wang’s IN REAL LIFE, a graphic novel about gaming, but this is a completely different creature. Everything about it is perfect and that is not something I get to say very often. But it’s true, from my point of view. I loved the characters, the story, the themes, the drawings, and even the ending (regardless of the fact that it’s not one hundred perfect realistic).
Now that I think about it, I’m not sure I even breathed as I read this. I was in a state of full absorption.
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