Logo Title Quebec Reading Connection

I Am Princess X

Priest, Cherie (Author)
Scholastic 2015. 232 pages
First published: 2015
ISBN: 9780545620857 (hardcover)
9781338032352 (paperback)
9780545642743 (e-book)
Original language: English
Book type: Novel
Book genre: Multigenre

Text Elements:

characterization, layout, panel arrangement

Reading Range

 
Cycle
Elementary
Secondary
 
1
2
3
1
2
ELA
K
1
2
3
4
5
6
1
2
3
4
5
ESL Intensive & Enriched
5
6
1
2
3
4
5

Description:

Fun and fast-paced, this multigenre mystery adventure novel begins with two girls finding friendship when “their PE teacher sent them into exile on the little-kids playground.” With Libby’s talent for drawing with sidewalk chalk and May’s literary imagination, Princess X is born.

The first chapters convey the intensity of childhood attachment. They also provide clues that teenaged May must later interpret, with the help of her neighbour Trick (would-be super-hacker) and underground-activist-genius, Jackdaw.

Coffee-crazed techie Seattle, Washington, provides the setting. The plot hinges on characters’ fluency with computers, for good and nefarious purposes. The lure of the online community is reflected in chat rooms, “the darknet” and Libby’s hit webcomic, posted with hidden messages for May. “Meat-world” adventures include forays into secret urban spaces, outrunning a rampaging SUV and a break-in to collect evidence against Libby’s erstwhile captor, now stalker.

Princess X comic panels are sprinkled throughout, portraying the reasons for Libby’s capture and imprisonment, and her eventual escape from the psychopath. They also provide clues for May—and for readers. This is a both suspenseful and uplifting tale that places power firmly in the hands of the teen characters: “‘But we’re not superheroes,’ May argued. ‘Speak for yourself,’ Jackdaw told her.”

  •  

    This multimodal text uses written and visual narrative forms to tell the story. Comics form the backstory that is revealed by the characters as they unravel the mystery of Princess X. Elements of fairy tales, modern video games and webcomics can be detected.

  •  

    Examine the cover and consider the use of colour, line, image and text. What kind of story do you think this will be?

  •  

    Enter into an inquiry based on the issues and ideas that revolve around the use of the terms “princess” and “prince.” What message is conveyed by the use of these terms in this text, in other texts and in society?

  •  

    Read and discuss the inside flap. What will this story be about? Predict what will happen. Visit the novel’s website for additional information and create a book web.

  •  

    Character mapping can help a reader understand more about the characters and story. Complete three character maps for Libby, May and Princess X. What will you describe?

  •  

    Transform the ending of this story. Include writing techniques creatively used by the author: narrative text, Internet message posts, a comic strip.

  • To exercise critical judgment
  • To solve problems
  • To use creativity
  • To use information
  • Health and Well-Being
  • Ethics and Religious Culture