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The Princess Knight

3.96 of 5 stars 3.96  ·  rating details  ·  938 ratings  ·  117 reviews
Cornelia Funke, author of the international best-seller THE THIEF LORD, makes her brilliant debut as a picture-book writer with this winning tale of a young princess's adventure!

Violet is a young princess who wishes she could show the world that she is just as brave and strong as her brothers. But her strict father insists that she get married, and her brothers only mock h...more
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published March 1st 2004 by Chicken House (first published 2001)
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I enjoyed this picture book by renowned author Cornelia Funke. Having read her (perhaps overly long and detailed but still lovely) novel Inkheart, I was curious how her style would translate to picture books.

By and large, I enjoyed the story. There wasn't really anything "special" in the telling (such as really vibrant word choice or a unique author style) but the story itself was definitely fun and captivating. I love that it's a "strong princess" story without trying to fly in the face of all...more
Lisa Vegan
Loved it! The story is very sweet and very funny. It’s a shame, though, that these gender themed stories are still even necessary, the “girls can do what boys can do” stories. I even checked the date, hoping this was penned in the 1970s or earlier, but no, the original copyright for the story & pictures is 2001.

But, it’s a lovely original fairy tale. The illustrations are amusing and aesthetically pleasing, if taking the context of the story into account. I enjoyed the tale very much also. T...more
Apr 11, 2011 Gundula rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone interested in strong female characters, knightly fairy tales
Originally published in German as Der geheimnisvolle Ritter Namenlos (which can be roughly translated as the mysterious knight no-name), Cornelia Funke's clever tale of a little princess, who, after the death of her mother, is taught by her father the same lessons and knightly pursuits he is teaching his sons, is both entertaining and empowering (and a great story for all children, not just little girls). Violetta is smaller than her brothers, and of course, like many younger siblings, she recei...more
Crystal Marcos
The Princess Knight is a good read for any child and especially a little girl. It shows that girls can do anything that a boy can do. In the case of the little princess, she has the skill to do even better than her brothers and other knights. When the princess was a baby her mother died and the king raised her the only way he knew how, which was to raise her as he had her brothers. The princess was much smaller than her brothers and they often teased her. She trained secretly herself and became...more
Feb 02, 2011 Brenda rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Knightly Princesses
Shelves: picture-books
A very cute story of a little princess who is raised to to do all the things that her brothers do like jousting, horseback riding and sword fighting. Violetta is however teased by her brothers because she is smaller and not as strong as they are. She is determined to get better thus sneaks out of the castle each night to practice. In no time, Violetta is jousting and fighting better than her brothers and they begin to tease her less and less. On Violetta's sixteenth birthday her father announces...more
Apr 12, 2011 Ronyell rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Ronyell by: The Picture-Book Club
I was reading this book for the Children's Book Picture Book Club for the theme of royalty and I was so into this book! “The Princess Knight” is a children's book by Cornelia Funke along with illustrations by Kerstin Meyer and it is about a young woman named Violetta who ends up competing with the other knights to become the best knight in her father's kingdom. “The Princess Knight” is a truly brilliant book that shows women in a strong light that every child will definitely love for many years!...more
I actually ended up quite enjoying this book!
I'm always a little hesitant that 'strong female character books' will end up being, not so much that, as 'lazy-stupid-classless male books.'

Thankfully (even though there was indeed some of that in this book) I felt our princess held her own and made herself a protagonist from her own hard work and dedication.

Yes, I would have liked for there to be at least one prince or knight that wasn't so stereotypical, but other than that I didn't really have to...more
Cheryl in CC NV
Apr 12, 2011 Cheryl in CC NV rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: feminists, fans of Jay williams
Ooh - wonderful. The illustrations were so fun, with all the detail. And the titular twist was done with perfect grace and verve. Violetta is smart, brave, resourceful, and kind. What parent wouldn't want their little girl to be like her? Well done - I'm going to be recommending this one.
Apr 10, 2011 Dolly rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
This is a terrific tale about a princess who learns to keep up and even beat the boys, in her own way. She is not as strong or as loud, but she is hard working and determined to be good at what she does. She doesn't come by her talent too easily - there is an illustration of the poor girl's bruises being tended to by her nursemaid. She is persistent, though, and in the end it pays off. We really enjoyed this story and we loved the ending. The illustrations are wonderful and I love that features...more
Amy Musser
When Princess Violetta was born her mother died. Her father didn’t know what to do, so he raised Violetta just like her 3 older brothers. At first her brothers laughed at her because she was too small to lift a sword and fell off her horse. But Violetta was determined and every night she snuck out of the castle and practiced until she was better than her brothers. On her 16th birthday the king decides to hold a jousting tournament and the champion knight will win the princesses hand in marriage....more
Genre: Picture Book
Audience: K-6
Reading Level: Late Early/Transitional Readers
Curricular Uses: Read-Aloud, Independent Reading
Topic: Princesses
Theme: A princess can be as strong as a male, reversing the theme that princesses must be rescued by princes
Literary Elements: Dialogue, fairy tale language (and she lived happily ever after), humor
Illustrations: The illustrations are not as bright and exciting as they could be, and they do not reinforce the text as much as they could.
Additional Commen...more
*•.♥.•*Sabrina Rutter*•.♥.•*
This is a cute story about a king who had a lot of sons, but only one daughter. The queen passed away when the princess was only a baby so she was left to be raised by the king who decided her upbringing would be no different than her brothers.
The little princess in this story shows our children that they can achieve whatever goal they desire with a lot of hard work and determination, to not let others bully them into not believing in themself, and that all that hard work might pay off in a big...more
Christy Johnson
I happened across this book when I was cleaning the library of a local school- I swear it called out to me. Yep. It knew my name and my greatest weakness. Overcome by the siren call of this seeming innocent book I picked it up before I had a chance to fight against the spell the title and the whimsical cover art cast on me. Okay, it was a book, so I wasn't *really* going to fight over any spell a book cast on me. When a book presents itself to me and says, 'Read me! Read me!' like Alice to her c...more
Reading this book put a smile on my face. I loved how the princess took her future into her own hands and showed that she was a strong person who could make decisions for herself. She proved to be quite capable of making up her own mind. I especially loved the ending, it was a sweet and simple. I would recommend.

*Taken from my book reviews blog:
Basic Plot: When a princess's mother dies, the king decides to raise her just as he raised her brothers, then has to deal with the consequences.

This is a fairly traditional tale, repackaged yet again. The girl is raised to fight, ride, and be independent, then is asked to marry the winner of a contest she'd beat the boys hands-down at. The father suddenly expects the very capable girl to become a shrinking violet of a girl and is shocked when she takes matters into her own hands, wins, and says...more
This was a sweet book that offers a modern day take on a princess story, using gender stereotyping as its point of departure. Our protagonist, Violetta, is raised by her father, the king, alongside her three older brothers in the only way he knows how to raise a child: as a knight. Violetta overcomes the teasing by her older brothers--who make fun of her small size and constant struggles keeping pace with the aggressive, knightly tasks--and with determination and dedication she becomes stronger...more
A book that would have been on my daughter's shelves when she was little had it been around. I especially liked how she learned to improve her skills by teaching herself how to do things her way - and changed her situation through action. A nice offering for girls when the market seems to be flooded with pink and purple fancies and frills.
27 months - Yay for girls being able to do what the boys do! This is a fun read for a little girl.

35 months - found a near mint hard copy at the Goodwill and had to have it!
I like this 'girl power' type book for kids. Lots of very cute illustrations and a good ending to the book.
Well done. Love that canny princess and her rose shield. Funke writes great fairy tales, we all love Igraine the Brave as well. The author blurb (I was looking to see how to pronounce "Funke". Is it "funk-ee" I wonder? that's what we call her at my house because we have a very low threshold for amusing ourselves) describes her as the "German J. K. Rowling", which I can see, but then it got me think how awesome it would be if Rowling also wrote marvelous fairy tales for younger kids.
In The Princess Knight, after raising his daughter Violetta to be able to ride horses, sword fight, and joust as well, if not better than, his three sons, King Wilfred announces that in honor of her sixteenth birthday he will hold a tournament. The winner, he tells her, will be offered her hand in marriage. "So put on your finest gown and practice your prettiest smile."

Violetta revolts. "You want me to marry some dimwit in a tin suit? Just look at your own knights! They whip their horses and the...more
King Wilfred does a wonderful job of raising his sons to be just like him, but when he has a daughter, Violetta, and his wife dies then what is he to do? He decides to also raise her just like him. Her brothers who are strong and brave beat her at everything they do, and they even make fun of her because of her size and lack of strength. Violetta decides she is going to start learning and doing things her own way. When the King decides to hold a knight competition in order to win Violetta's hand...more
I have to admit that I wasn't able to finish Funke's Inkheart, but I really enjoyed this story with the interesting drawings (based, so the inside cover informs me) on the Bayeux tapestry. I've been a little concerned about my (almost) 3-year-old's daily dose of princess literature; this story shows that a princess doesn't just have to do girly stuff. In this story, the princess Violetta is born to a King with three sons; since her mother dies shortly after Violetta's birth, the king decides to...more
(Note: both author and illustrator are German)

King Wilfred the Worthy knows how to raise sons. So when the Queen gives birth to a daughter (and the Queen promptly dies), Princess Violetta is raised in the same manner as her brothers. At first she’s laughed at because she’s too small and weak to ride the horses and swing a sword, but with a little determination, the Princess finds that extra practice and doing it her way (not her father’s) makes her a very successful knight. When she turns 16, th...more
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Alaina Sloo
I'm not a big fan of reading a lot traditional princess stories in the library in which the beautiful princess is rescued by the prince and loved purely for her beauty (and goodness, which is a quality of beauty, right?). So I love books like the Princess Knight for reading aloud to my nursery, kindergarten, and 1st grade classes, books that satisfy the desire for princess stories but tell a story about strong girls who do things for themselves. The princess knight is a girl-has-to-dress-up-as-a...more
Violetta is the youngest of 4 children and the only girl. Her mother died when she was born and her father has no idea how to raise a little girl. So he raises her the same as the 3 boys. Violetta has to struggle to accomplish the same tasks as her brothers, but with extra practice she soon becomes better than they ever were. One day her father announces that he is to hold a contest of knights to see who will win her hand in marriage. Violetta is not happy with this at all. So she sends her maid...more
This is one of a series of "adventurous" princess books we collected for Moira. The princess decides to compete in the competition where her hand in marriage and wins. We included it in our German books, because the author is from Germany, and Moira is too young for my favorite of her books, Inkheart.
Marissa Garcia
This princess armors herself, literally! To prove herself worthy of her brothers' respect, Princess Violetta self-trains as a knight when everyone else in the castle is asleep, with the rose gardener's son keeping watch for her. After years of hard work, she is superior to all of her brothers' skills. When she turns sixteen and her father insists on holding a jousting tournament with her hand in marriage as the prize, brave Violetta enters the contest in disguise and wins her own independence. A...more
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Cornelia Caroline Funke is a multiple award-winning German author of children's and YA fiction. She is best known for her Inkheart trilogy. The Inkheart books have gained a variety of attention, and critics have praised Funke as the "German J. K. Rowling". Her books are very popular in her native country, and many have now been translated into English. Her work fits mainly into the fantasy and adv...more
More about Cornelia Funke...
Inkheart (Inkworld, #1) Inkspell (Inkworld, #2) The Thief Lord Dragon Rider Inkdeath (Inkworld, #3)

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