||Steven Lenton is our Illustrator of the month here at Storytellers, Inc. His beautiful illustration features in our 2015 Illustrators Calendar and in fact it comes from the very book that I’m about to convince you to go and buy. Or come and buy if you’re local.
I’ve been staring at the cover of Princess Daisy and the Dragon and the Nincompoop Knights for a while now. In fact even as I type this my eyes keep sliding off my screen and back onto the book sitting beside me. I had a similar experience with Ed Vere and Malachy Doyle’s book ‘Too Noisy’, there is something so gorgeous about the colours on the cover that I just don’t want to stop looking at it. It makes me so very very happy.
The text inside too, fills me with joy - it’s a brilliantly funny rhyme with a fabulously feminist take on not-so-suave Knights and slightly less Princessy Princesses. When everything points to a Dragon in the vicinity, the King enlists some daring Knights to sort the fire-breather out. Each one more foolish than the last, the dragon looks set to conquer the castle, until an unlikely hero appears from the last place anyone thought to look.
Fairytales are meant to be told and re-told, that’s the whole point of them so there is a wealth of picture books that revisit traditional tales and twist them around out there - trust me, they are not as good as this one. In our bookshop we have a special shelf permanently filled with Princess books, we’re very particular about the Princesses we stock and we pride ourselves on our hand-selected range so it’s the overall wonderfulness of this book; a combination of gorgeous production, Disney-worthy artwork and a tremendous text, that means Princess Daisy and the Dragon and the Nincompoop Knights is going to be a permanent fixture on our Princess shelf here at Storytellers, Inc. In fact, it’s jumping right into my personal top 5 Princess picture books (The Worst Princess, Kemp & Ogilvie; The Big Princess, Taro Miura; Primrose, Alex T. Smith and I don’t actually have a fifth - but a top 4 sounded strange…).
I am already looking forward to seeing what Steven Lenton pens - and pencils and paints - next!