The Prince and the Dressmaker

By Jen Wang,

Book cover of The Prince and the Dressmaker

Book description

A fairy tale for any age, Jen Wang's The Prince and the Dressmaker will steal your heart.

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…

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Why read it?

4 authors picked The Prince and the Dressmaker as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

I’ve been a fan of Jen Wang since Livejournal was still a thing. Her stories have an indie yet accessible vibe, and her elegant brushwork is equally adept at capturing cute, expressive faces as it is at depicting detailed, flowing ballgowns. 

In this gorgeous graphic novel, a young seamstress becomes the confidante of a shy prince as he embarks on a journey of gender exploration (with soooooo many pretty dresses.) It captures the warm, nostalgic feeling of an intimate childhood friendship, the kind with its own secret language and lore.

This book falls on the younger side of this list.…

From S.H.'s list on a spicy queer romp through history.

A wonderfully charming fairy tale with gorgeous cartooning and character design from creator Jen Wang, this inclusive story features an unlikely, complicated, and ultimately heartwarming relationship between a shy prince with a secret and an ambitious seamstress with the vision to make his forbidden dreams come true. Managing to handle complex issues of identity and personal expression with aplomb, this graphic novel is a great fit for teen and tween readers. It’s equally easy to imagine an animated or live-action version of this feel-good fantasy full of grace, emotion, and spirit. 

A beautifully drawn, full-color graphic novel about a dressmaker and a prince finding both commonality with each other as well as more about themselves in the process. It's a great modern fairytale that deals with themes of gender nonconformity and non-binary identity in a very honest yet tactful way. A must-have for parents of queer children or for the children themselves. A truly fun and engaging all-ages read.

When a seamstress’s outré dress design causes a scandal among the Parisian aristocracy, she loses her job – and gains a mysterious new patron, who hires her to deploy her avant-garde taste to spectacular effect and with an unlimited budget for dress after dress that sets France’s society set on fire with gossip and envy. But as “Lady Crystallia’s” notoriety escalates to a fever pitch, how long can this blossoming friendship keep its secrets? Wang’s fairytale setting is wedded to a visual sensibility full of charming characters and beautiful settings – and, above all, spectacular costume design, as the reader…

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