Tiara Trade: The VERY Fairy Princess Takes the Stage by Julie Andrews and Emma Walton Hamilton
HI! I'M GERALDINE. I'M A VERY FAIRY PRINCESS.
I KNOW I'M A FAIRY PRINCESS BECAUSE I FEEL IT INSIDE.
A SPARKLY FEELING OF JUST KNOWING IN MY HEART.
Gerry makes sure that she lives up to the standard of being regal--wearing full, twirly skirts, wings, and a crown whenever she can--and (noblesse oblige)! helping others solve problems whenever and wherever they occur.
But Gerry's sparkly feeling is threatened when her ballet teacher Madame Danielle overlooks her obvious qualifications (and fairy princess accessories) and chooses her classmate Tiffany to play the title role in The Crystal Princess. And to add insult to injury, Gerry is assigned the totally embarrassing role as Court Jester, complete with baggy, jingly costume, silly shoes with curled-up toes, and an outrageous three-pointed hat with bells. And there are no sparkles anywhere!
Gerry' parents point out that everyone has an important role to play and that she looks adorable in her costume, but Gerry's mirror is no magic mirror, and she knows she looks ridiculous. And worst of all, she looks like a BOY!
Summoning all her princessy dignity, though, Gerry drags through rehearsals, learning her part and doing her best to be a good Jester while suffering as she sees Tiffany trying out her shimmery princess gown and glittering tiara. Gerry consoles herself as she dresses for the big performance by concealing her own sparkly crown under her silly cap of bells.
At least she's still a princess inside.
Then comes the big night. Gerry has to admit that Tiffany looks the part, gorgeous in her glamorous costume, a ballet princess who deserves the hand of the prince in the final wedding scene. But then, disaster strikes:
THE PRINCE IS WAITING FOR HER.
HE LIFTS HER VEIL, AND TIFFANY'S SHINY CRYSTAL TIARA TOPPLES RIGHT OFF HER HEAD. THEN PRINCE RAMONE ACCIDENTALLY STEPS ON IT.
MADAME DANIELLE IS HORRIFIED. THEN SHE LOOKS RIGHT AT ME.
TIFFANY LOOKS SO SAD.... AND A CRYSTAL PRINCESS REALLY NEEDS TO SPARKLE!
And, of course, Geraldine knows just where to find a replacement tiara, and graciously, as a true princess would, she takes her own from under her silly cap and places it on Tiffany's head, saving the show and bringing down the house.
In this second book in the series, Julie Andrews' and Emma Hamilton's just published The Very Fairy Princess Takes the Stage (Little, Brown, 2011) has everything for fans of ballet and princess stories--appropriately pastel pictures by noted illustrator Christine Davenier and a modern princess heroine who knows just how to be as gracious as a real royal.
For a dramatic pair, read this one with Ian Falconer's hilarious Olivia Acts Out, in which Olivia hams it up and steals the show as Cow #3.