Another misleading fairy tale title! It’s not about princesses; it’s about the king, a father of teens. The tale begins and ends with him; it is he who transforms from being outraged by disobedience to accepting that–hey!–teenagers sneak out of the house. Throw a fit, but get over it. You did it yourself as a prince! And the old soldier? Couldn’t he be more appealing? Should he pick the youngest? the eldest? In the end, it doesn’t matter. The princesses sneak out, the soldier spies, but the king?–he is transformed, and that’s what fairy tales are about.
Do you have this tale in your library? If not, try these:
Grimm, Brothers, The Twelve Dancing Princesses, illustrated by Dorothee Duntze. NorthSouth, 2013.
Lang, Andrew, The Red Fairy Book. Any edition.
Pullman, Philip, Fairy Tales from the Brothers Grimm. Viking Adult, 2012. (He uses the alternate title, “The Shoes That Were Danced to Pieces.”
Shall I see you at the Texas Library Association Conference in San Antonio next week? I’m in booth 2511.