Princeless Books 1-3 (Save Yourself, Get Over Yourself, The Pirate Princess)

Monday, September 24, 2018


Princeless Books 1-3 (Save Yourself, Get Over Yourself, The Pirate Princess)
Jeremy Whitley, et al., 2012, 2014, 2015

Read Harder Challenge 2018 - A comic that isn’t published by Marvel, DC, or Image

Premise: Princess Adrienne can’t believe her father hired a dragon and stuck her in a tower. She’s had it with expectations and decides to save her sisters herself.


I read the first arc of this book in issues back when it came out, and I had such fond memories of it that I picked up the first three collections. And it’s good, but my recollections were perhaps overly rose-colored.

To sum-up: It’s got a great premise, but the execution is a bit rocky. The first issue and the first arc are fun overall, but a lot of the jokes rely on easy pot-shots at fantasy tropes or wordplay that’s only clever the first time. None of this is bad, just... one-dimensional, I guess?

The plot meanders far too much. The first book is Adrienne getting out of the tower, heading home only to discover her youngest sister isn’t there, find out her (effeminate, shy) brother set up her escape, be mistaken for her own abductor, and meet and befriend Bedelia, a blacksmith who sets her up with fancy armor and tags along on her adventure.

That’s all okay as far as set-up goes, but not one of these introduced elements have begun to pay off by the end of Book 3. In the second book, Adrienne and Bedelia find one of Adrienne’s sisters and eventually rescue her, sort of. It’s complicated, the art isn’t as good as the first book, and it isn’t a very interesting story. In the third book, the story takes a hard left, changes characters and genres, and none of Adrienne’s sisters are in it at all. At this point, I’m just not invested in these characters or this world anymore.

It’s still a fine book, and it’s still probably a really fun book for kids. And maybe it gets better after this; it’s supposedly still going on. Part of why book three was so odd was that the new story of Raven the martial-arts pirate is so much more interesting than Adrienne’s story. The problem is, it’s supposed to be Adrienne’s book.

Looking at this book now, it seems a bit like training wheels for the stuff the author is doing now. I’ve read a little of his more recent work for Marvel, and it has a better balance between charming humor and action, so the later Princeless might find its feet as well.

3 Stars - A Good Book



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