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It’s the year of the book list on The Measured Mom! If you haven’t checked out the recent additions to my book lists, please check out the full page here. It’s getting bigger all the time!
Today I’m sharing some fun versions of the familiar tale, The Princess and the Pea. I chose only our favorites to include in this list. (Want a printable list? Grab it here. )
Believe Me, I Never Felt the Pea! by Nancy Loewen
We loved this funny twist on the familiar tale!
The story is told by the “princess” (who isn’t really a princess at all). One night she was caught in a storm and sought refuge at the castle with her dog, Prince S. The maid misunderstands, believes the girl is a princess, and leads her to a stack of 20 mattresses with a pea underneath. When the girl falls out of bed and comes to breakfast covered in bruises, the maid believes that the pea caused the bad night of sleep and declares her a princess. This book is well written and thoroughly entertaining.
The Very Smart Pea and the Princess-to-Be, by Mini Grey
This creative version is one of my favorites. It’s told by the pea, who explains that the Queen demanded that her son get married. “You are nearly thirty-four years old, Prince! If you are not married within one year, I shall stop your allowance.” The prince travels the world and meets many princesses, but none of them are right for him. The queen tries a different approach – she puts the pea under a stack of mattresses, but no princess can feel it.
One night, the kind young gardener is drenched by a storm. When she knocks at the door, she is whisked away to the stack of twenty mattresses. You’ll have to read it yourself to find out how the pea intervenes!
The Princess and the Pea, by Maja Dusikova
If you are looking for the traditional story, this is the one to get. I love the soft illustrations and the simple storytelling. The book has just the right amount of text with just the right amount of detail in the pictures.
The Princess and the Pea, by Harriet Ziefert
This is the perfect version for young readers. It has simple, cheerful illustrations with the right amount of simple storytelling. One to add to your shelves for your students to read. (about guided reading level G/H)
The Princess and the Pea, by Janet Stevens
We adore Janet Stevens’ funny illustrations. In this book, a lion prince is the son of a lion king and tiger queen (which feels a little weird, but oh well). As he travels the world searching for a bride, he is disappointed by every princess that he meets. (My favorite is the greedy pig princess!) The story follows the traditional tale; the only real difference is the hilarious animal illustrations.
The Princess and the Pizza, by Mary Jane and Herm Auch
I can’t remember how many times my preschooler and kindertner requested this book, but it was a lot. In this fractured tale, the spunky Princess Paulina is both practical and smart – and she proves that she doesn’t need a prince to make her dreams come true.
La Princesa and the Pea, by Susan Middleton Elya
We loved this Latino twist on the familiar tale. The author has cleverly integrated Spanish words into the rhyming text, and the lovely artwo7rk brings the story to life.
Princess and the Peas, by Rachel Himes
This was one of my favorite versions, in which Ma Sally is looking for a wife for her son John, the most eligible bachelor in their southern town. Ma Sally is determined that the woman who marries him must cook black-eyed peas as well as she can. Plenty of women have their eyes on John, but it’s the smart and capable Princess who win’s John’s heart. I love that this version features African-American families of the 1950’s.
The Penguin and the Pea, by Janet Pearlman
This is a silly take on the classic story. I like that the Prince and Princess fall in love after spending time together instead of the “love at first sight” stuff you find in most fairy tale adaptations. Plus there’s just something about seeing a wig on a penguin… I can’t help but smile.
The Princess and the Pea, by Rachel Isadora
In this book the traditional tale is beautifully illustrated in an African setting. The pictures definitely steal the show, as the storytelling itself is far from compelling.
Princess Pigtoria and The Pea, by Pamela Duncan Edwards
You may be familiar with Edwards’ alliterative stories. Obviously, this book features the letter P – and it’s very well done! Princess Pigtornia has a dilapidated palace and is hoping she can marry the prince so that he will pay to fix it up. As it turns out, Prince Proudfoot is pompous and rude. So Pigtoria marries Percy the Pizza Pig instead.
Have you seen our other book lists about familiar versions of familiar tales?
Did you know? I have a collection of reader’s theater scripts based on familiar tales like this one!
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