It’s TBR Friday once again and I’m also sneaking in another notch off the Alphabet Soup Reading Challenge hosted by Escape with Dollycas, by getting finished with I Am Princess X by Cherie Priest. Here’s the blurb from Goodreads:
Best friends, big fans, a mysterious webcomic, and a long-lost girl collide in this riveting novel, perfect for fans of both Cory Doctorow and Sarah Dessen; illustrated throughout with comics.
Once upon a time, two best friends created a princess together. Libby drew the pictures, May wrote the tales, and their heroine, Princess X, slayed all the dragons and scaled all the mountains their imaginations could conjure.
Once upon a few years later, Libby was in the car with her mom, driving across the Ballard Bridge on a rainy night. When the car went over the side, Libby passed away, and Princess X died with her.
Once upon a now: May is sixteen and lonely, wandering the streets of Seattle, when she sees a sticker slapped in a corner window.
When May looks around, she sees the Princess everywhere: Stickers. Patches. Graffiti. There’s an entire underground culture, focused around a webcomic at IAmPrincessX.com. The more May explores the webcomic, the more she sees disturbing similarities between Libby’s story and Princess X online. And that means that only one person could have started this phenomenon—her best friend, Libby, who lives.
Ten Second Synopsis:
May and Libby were best friends – until Libby died in a horrible road accident, leaving May behind with nothing but memories and their shared work on a comic book series “Princess X”. When May starts noticing stickers of Princess X around her home town, she is baffled: who could be drawing Libby and May’s character if Libby died three years ago?
Time on the TBR Shelf:
I’m not really sure. At least a year, but not more than a year and a half.
Purchased from the Scholastic warehouse sale for a cool $5.00, or thereabouts.
Reason I haven’t read it yet:
Other books kept taking precedence.
- The format switches between novel and graphic novel, with actual parts of the Princess X comic included in the book. They are printed in a gorgeous purple and grey colour palette too, which is a feast for the eyes.
- The mystery was really absorbing, because in the beginning, May doesn’t realise that there are parts to Libby’s story of which she isn’t aware, for various reasons. There are also clues left about for May to find which is always fun.
- The pace is spot on, with not much dallying, and when the proverbial hits the fan, it’s a seat-of-your-pants ride to the end.
- I really liked May as a character. She’s authentic for her age, with flaws and all.
Less Impressive Bits:
- In the beginning it seemed like the author was having a bit of trouble finding the right voice for her characters, but this cleared up by the middle.
- There is a little red herring thrown out early on about what happens to the physical collection of Princess X comics and I wished that this had played a part in the mystery, but it didn’t.
On reflection, was this worth buying?
Absolutely! I got totally sucked in to this mystery and both the format and the content of the story are a change from the usual YA school-yard dynamics fare.
Where to now for this tome?
I loved it, but I can’t see myself reading it again, so I will put it out for sale at the next Suitcase Rummage I attend.
So that’s one more chink off Mount TBR and one more book to add to my Mount TBR Reading Challenge total! I think I’m up to 13 or 14 now, but I’ll try and fit one more in before I do a wrap up post next month.
Until next time,