“Princess Hyacinth had a problem.”
This first line in Florence Parry Heide’s tale about a princess with an unusual problem sets the stage for Princess Hyacinth’s witty adventure. In Princess Hyacinth (the Surprising Tale of a Girl Who Floated), poor Princess Hyacinth is stuck inside the palace everyday. She cannot run outside, go swimming, or play with other children. If Princess Hyacinth was to go outside she would simply float away. Her parents try everything to keep her grounded, even placing a heavy bejeweled crown upon her head and sewing jewels to her socks. She even has to wear a seatbelt with her swimsuit! Everyday, Princess Hyacinth dreams of running outside and playing with her kite-flying friend named Boy. Until one day, Princess Hyacinth decides that she is tired of being weighed down and wants to fly high like a balloon. What happens next is quite comical and cute.
Florence Parry Heide (author of The Shrinking of Treehorn) creates a magical fairytale with a unique twist that will simply have children fascinated by the story. The oil and watercolor illustrations are fabulously done by Lane Smith (illustrator of James and the Giant Peach and The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales), but it is the design and the placement of the text that will enthrall children (Molly Leach is credited with the design of the book). Since Princess Hyacinth has the unusual problem of floating, it makes perfect sense that the text float as well. This bright idea fits perfectly with the story and definitely adds a little something extra. This quirky picture book will soon become one of your family’s favorite stories!