Princess Bedelia was as lovely as the moon shining upon a lake, as graceful as a leaping cat, and she was also extremely practical. When a dragon moved into her neighborhood demanding a princess to devour, Bedelia's practicality and self-preservation kicked into gear.
Rubbish! she said. Dragons can't tell the difference between princesses and anyone else. Use your common sense. He's just asking for me because he's a sb.
She proceeded to defeat the bothersome dragon, outwit her conniving suitor, and rescue a prince sleeping under a spell while locked away at the top of a tall, magical tower with stairs. Well ahead of its time when written back in 1969, this twist on the standard princess fairy tale gives young girls and boys a clever heroine to admire. Indeed, the author wrote this story for his grandson, Ben.
Friso Henstra collaborated with Jay Williams on nine picture books for children. In 1969 his quirky, memorable illustrations in The Practical Princess won the prestigious Golden Apple Award at the Biennial of Illustrations Bratislava, one of the oldest international hors given to children's book illustrators.