Written By: Daniel Haack & Isabel Galupo
Illustrated by: Becca Human
For Ages: 4-8 years
Topics Covered: Fractured Fairytales, LGBTQ, Relationships, Love, Family Acceptance, Interracial Relationships.
This book is everything I want in a fairytale! A maiden that is renowned in battle receives an invitation from the (Black!) royal family to attend a ball so that the prince can find a bride. Although the maiden knows the prince, and voices only feeling for him like a brother, her mother urges her to go and have a good time anyway. Feeling overwhelmed by the crowd and the pressure to dance with the prince, the maiden goes outside and ends up meeting a beautiful woman. Inevitably it turns out that this woman in the princess! Immediately, the king and queen show excitement and joy at their daughter finding a connection with someone and they dance the night away at the ball.
I love this story because it is positive, casual, and beautiful. The relationship is immediately celebrated and welcomed, something so rare in a fairytale. The words are lyrical and rhyming, reminiscent of the older style fairytale that most of us were read growing up. The illustrations are in rich jewel tones and I truly love that the relationship portrayed is interracial. The pair is shown going on adventures and running with swords while the princess is in a dress! So many stereotypes are being smashed here, it’s a brilliant book to be added into rotation for young readers. We need joyful LGBTQ children’s books to normalize these feelings of love, and Maiden & Princess is truly incredible and much needed.
Daniel is currently a creative development executive of original kids and family programming for YouTube (via MTP, Inc.). He is a recent graduate of the technology, innovation and education (TIE) Ed.M. program at the Harvard University Graduate School of Education, where he studied as a Saul Zaentz Fellow.
Previously, Daniel was head of marketing and digital product for the children’s media franchise StoryBots, where his work included overseeing the launch of StoryBots Classroom, a free platform for educators, as well the premieres of two Netflix original series,Ask the StoryBots and StoryBots Super Songs. As a producer of StoryBots’ digital platforms, Daniel won a Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Interactive Media, received two additional nominations in the same category and was a Webby Award nominee in the Websites – Youth and Video Channels – Animation categories.
Isabel Galupo lives and writes in Los Angeles. She graduated from Ithaca College as a Park Scholar with a B.S. in screenwriting and a minor in sociology. She participated in the Lambda Literary Writer’s Retreat for Emerging LGBT Voices in 2015. She has worked in the animation industry for over five years at major studios including Nickelodeon, Netflix, and Warner Bros. Animation. Maiden & Princessis her first book.
As a kid, Isabel used to get in trouble for trying to read library books under the table during family dinners. As an adult, she reads wherever she pleases thankyouverymuch. When she’s not writing, Isabel FaceTimes with her four younger sisters and daydreams about the fat, squishy pug that she will one day adopt.
Becca Human is an artist & director who tells stories through film, illustration and comics.
Becca’s work explores alienation, survival, and the surrealism of everyday life. Both narrative and abstract, my approach to storytelling is shaped by science fiction, fantasy, and dark humour.
Becca works traditionally with pencil, ink, paint, and oil pastel — Becca hand draws illustrations, then scan, and digitally colour them. As a filmmaker, Becca has a diy ethic, from making props to animating title design.