Friday, June 23, 2023

Today's read... Cursed Princess Club Volume Two by LambCat

Today's read isn't only a graphic novel but also the second in a series, which I've actually read so far and enjoyed. Set for the young adult audience (but also completely and utterly appropriate for even middle graders), this series revolves around a princess, who doesn't quite fit into the role like her siblings do. I appreciated the way this one addresses the issues of wholesome and funny, and yet so dark and gripping. If the second volume is anything like the first, it's definitely a winner.

Sit down with snacks and drinks because I'm expecting this one to be a read, which isn't easily put down until the very last page.

Volume Two
by LambCat
WEBTOON Unscrolled
YA Fantasy
352 pages
ages 10 and up

JULY 4th!!!

Just because you’re cursed doesn’t mean you’re not special.

Gwendolyn, the youngest of the King’s three daughters, is living proof that princesses don’t always have it all. She isn’t like a typical fairy-tale princess, or other princesses in the Pastel Kingdom. Gwendolyn, with her big heart and love of baking, isn’t particularly attractive. Unlike her sisters who have woodland creatures do their hair and makeup, or have flowers blossom wherever they sleep, Gwendolyn is a bit…different. So when her father proposes marriage for her and her sisters to make an alliance with the Plaid Kingdom, it breaks Gwendolyn’s heart to hear that Prince Frederick thinks she’s “really ugly.” Overwhelmed and ashamed, she runs away into the forest and encounters the twisted world of the Cursed Princess Club, where her life will never be the same.

The Cursed Princess Club are a ragtag band of outcasts, misfits and cursed princesses who have created an incredible friendship circle. It is among these friends where Gwendolyn learns to embrace her uniqueness and find her people.

In this second book of the series, we learn low self esteem isn’t just for girls! Meet the Princels―princes who have shunned society not because of curses (although one has to wonder…) but because of their own insecurities about their physical appearance and their inability to find romantic partners. And then we have Prince Frederick, who starts to worry if he even deserves Gwen. Plus, you too can learn to be as pretty as a Cursed Princess!



Princes and princesses hit beauty and ugliness with all the right twists and turns, while adding in action, dark moments, heart-piercing emotions, and tons of laughter, too.

Gwendolyn has found her place in the Cursed Princess Club and even seems to have discovered somewhat of a balance with her not-so-really-fiance. If it weren't for her worsening curse, all would be okay-ish. But figuring out how to handle the growing symptoms isn't the only problem she faces. A mysterious person is sending her notes, which she's not sure are as harmless as they seem. Add her and her siblings' first ball in the public eye and an enormous, very deadly spider, and her curse might be the least of her concerns.

I did read the first volume in this series, and the second one starts where that one left off. While volume one lays the groundwork and first adventures, this one lets the action and heart-filled moments take off. Gwendolyn is, now, in a fairly good place, and it's inspiring to see how she's found footing not only with the other cursed princesses but has formed a kind-of friendship with her own prince. One thing I do appreciate about this series is that it doesn't throw both feet into romance but digs its foundations in Gwendolyn's struggles with her curse and self-imaging. Romance might somewhat be there (in an extremely, very broad sense of the word), but it has a monumental way to go before (or even if ) it heads in that direction. And yet, there are enough hints that it might. Somewhat. In any case, Gwendolyn's already grown and shines in her own form of 'princess' light...and this is the theme that this volume tackles. 

While princess-y, this is a read with darker tones...and still, builds in tons of humor, too. These juxtaposed directions make the tale addicting, entertaining, and twisted in all the right ways. The characters and curses are over-the-top and, sometimes, completely ridiculous, and yet, the messages are serious and the danger is deadly. The graphics play along with this flip-flop as they transform from popping colors to dark and dreary scenes. And the mood can flick in a second, which makes it a read not easily put down. I can't wait to see what happens in volume three. 

No comments: