unconventional princess picture books, for kids age 3.5 - 6

A Listmania! list by cambridge reader "cambridgearea" (cambridge, ma United States)
The list author says: "My 3.5 y.o daughter got bitten by the princess bug, but as a feminist I don't like any of the traditional disney princess stories where the princesses are noted only for their external beauty, and wait around passively for a prince to come save them with a kiss. And can't we teach our daughters to expect more from their mates than a "handsome" prince? How about qualities like kindness and intelligence? So I'm trying to create a collection of alternative books to read to her, where princesses save princes, the princes have some substance to them, the princesses have adventures, use their brains, do sports, create their own destinies... showing girls and women are daring, spunky, spirited, smart female characters, challenging stereotypes. Target age: 3.5+ years old."
Don't Kiss the Frog!: Princess Stories with Attitude
1.  Don't Kiss the Frog!: Princess Stories with Attitude by Elaine Canham
The list author says:
  "Great!  6 princess tales, each with a twist.  humorous, not overbearing. sometimes they marry the prince (when the prince is kind and shares her interests), sometimes they don't.  lots of text on each page so < 5yo may find it too slow. my 5.5 y.o. loves it."
$11.33   Used & New from: $1.39
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)

Princess Fishtail
2.  Princess Fishtail by Frances Minters
The list author says:
  "a great alternative to Disney's Little mermaid, who gives up her voice to marry the prince, without even knowing him, just based on his looks! this princess creates her own solution to combine her life with a human and her love of the water.  Nice ryhming text, nice humor, beautiful pictures.  too long for <4.5 yo?  my 5.5 year old loves it."
Used & New from: $0.01
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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The Paper Princess (Picture Puffins)
3.  The Paper Princess (Picture Puffins) by Elisa Kleven
The list author says:
  "Gorgeous illustrations, brave princess has adventures.  Three books are in this series.  5 year old loves it!"
$6.29   Used & New from: $0.01
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)

Princess Picky (Single Titles)
4.  Princess Picky (Single Titles) by Marjorie Priceman
The list author says:
  "A plucky princess who learns the benefits of eating vegetables. No discussions of her beauty or her marriage prospects, and a healthy food message to boot! Other plusses: the princess is described as good at math and smart. In the end she invents an airplane and is a pilot. Shows how seeds grow into plants. The illustrations are beautiful and creative, too. Well done as always Marjorie Priceman!"
Used & New from: $0.01
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

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The Emperor and the Kite (Paperstar Book)
5.  The Emperor and the Kite (Paperstar Book) by Ed Young
The list author says:
  "Brave loyal little girl (who is also a princess) saves her father, and grows up to be the leader of the nation. No discussions of her beauty or marriage prospects."
$6.29   Used & New from: $0.01
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)

Free To Be ... You And Me (1972 Television Cast)
6.  Free To Be ... You And Me (1972 Television Cast) by Marlo Thomas
The list author says:
  "I introduced my daughter to princess Atalanta (who was clever, and could build things and fix thigs, and could run as fast as the wind, etc.)  and she loves it. Hooray!"
Used & New from: $0.01
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (311 customer reviews)

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The Paper Princess Finds Her Way
7.  The Paper Princess Finds Her Way by Elisa Kleven
The list author says:
  "great!!"
Used & New from: $0.01
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)

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Falling For Rapunzel
8.  Falling For Rapunzel by Leah Wilcox
The list author says:
  "great twist on the rapunzel story, i laughed out loud about the underwear and dirty socks."
$5.39   Used & New from: $0.01
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (78 customer reviews)

The Paper Princess Flies Again: With Her Dog!
9.  The Paper Princess Flies Again: With Her Dog! by Elisa Kleven
The list author says:
  "loved it!"
Used & New from: $0.01
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

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Not All Princesses Dress in Pink (English and English Edition)
10.  Not All Princesses Dress in Pink (English and English Edition) by Jane Yolen
The list author says:
  "not read yet.."
$12.75   Used & New from: $8.24
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (37 customer reviews)

Princess Aasta
11.  Princess Aasta by Stina Langlo Ordal
The list author says:
  "princess searches for a bear. puts ad in paper. has adventure.  Cool art. minimal text so fits a 3 y.o. attention span"
Used & New from: $0.01
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Princess Bess Gets Dressed
12.  Princess Bess Gets Dressed by Margery Cuyler
The list author says:
  "wearing all that princess gear and being a  princess is tiring!  this princess prefers the freedom of her underwear!"
$12.88   Used & New from: $0.01
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)

Princesses Are Not Quitters
13.  Princesses Are Not Quitters by Kate Lum
The list author says:
  "my 3.5 yo daughter loves this book, probably becuase the princesses in it are so poofy.  but, i liked it too for the message. Not the worst princess book you could read to your kid!"
$6.26   Used & New from: $0.01
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)

The Tough Princess
14.  The Tough Princess by Martin Waddell
The list author says:
  "fantastic! I laughed aloud about the King's plan to "annoy a bad fairy" so the fairy would cast an evil spell.. Fun pictures! King does knitting, cooking, queen fixes the roof. Fairy #3 is pretty scary-looking so havent read it to my 3 yo yet. Age 4+"
Used & New from: $0.36
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

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Dear Dragon
15.  Dear Dragon by An Vrombaut
The list author says:
  "gorgeous colors. brave princess takes initiative, goes to visit dragon.  my 3 year old did not love it...*sigh*   but maybe yours will."
Used & New from: $0.98

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The Princesses Have a Ball
16.  The Princesses Have a Ball by Teresa Bateman
The list author says:
  "i loved this book, but my 3.5 y.o daughter did not take to it.  nevertheless, it's worth a try for your little one.  These princesses play basketball!"
Used & New from: $1.66
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

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Princesses Are Not Perfect
17.  Princesses Are Not Perfect by Kate Lum
The list author says:
  "second in a series.  not the best book out there, byt my 5 year old loved it, and at least it teaches the need not to be perfect."
$13.23   Used & New from: $0.01
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

The Paper Bag Princess (Classic Munsch)
18.  The Paper Bag Princess (Classic Munsch) by Robert Munsch
The list author says:
  "pretty good-- nice message about superficiality, but does she have to end up alone?  it seems like the choice is get the guy or be alone... why not a book where she gets the guy AND they are equals? havent read it yet to my 3 yo..."
$4.46   Used & New from: $0.01
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (449 customer reviews) | 1 customer discussion

Princess Prunella and the Purple Peanut
19.  Princess Prunella and the Purple Peanut by Maryann Kovalski
The list author says:
  "a princess book by feminist icon margaret atwood? it has to be good, right?  Will update once i've read it..."
Used & New from: $0.01
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

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Jane and the Dragon
20.  Jane and the Dragon by Martin Baynton
The list author says:
  "too scary for my 3 y.o... will try again after age 4"
Used & New from: $4.67
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)

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Do Princesses Wear Hiking Boots?
21.  Do Princesses Wear Hiking Boots? by Carmela LaVigna Coyle
The list author says:
  "have not read yet.."
$10.36   Used & New from: $0.01
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (86 customer reviews)

The Princess Knight (Booklist Editor's Choice. Books for Youth (Awards))
22.  The Princess Knight (Booklist Editor's Choice. Books for Youth (Awards)) by Cornelia Funke
Used & New from: $18.23
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)

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Princess Smartypants
23.  Princess Smartypants by Babette Cole
$12.09   Used & New from: $6.06
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (43 customer reviews)

Prince Cinders
24.  Prince Cinders by Babette Cole
$6.29   Used & New from: $1.92
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)

Princess Pigsty
25.  Princess Pigsty by Cornelia Funke
Used & New from: $5.73
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)

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Princess Fidgety Feet
26.  Princess Fidgety Feet by Pat Posner
The list author says:
  "haven't read yet but i like the cover!"
Used & New from: $23.98

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Cinder Edna
27.  Cinder Edna by Kevin O'Malley
$6.29   Used & New from: $1.41
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (74 customer reviews)

The Practical Princess (Hippo Fantasy)
28.  The Practical Princess (Hippo Fantasy) by Jay Williams
Used & New from: $11.63
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Sleeping Bobby
29.  Sleeping Bobby by Will Osborne
$15.36   Used & New from: $1.95
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

Kate and the Beanstalk (Anne Schwartz Books)
30.  Kate and the Beanstalk (Anne Schwartz Books) by Mary Pope Osborne
$7.19   Used & New from: $1.61
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)

The Gingerbread Girl
31.  The Gingerbread Girl by Lisa Campbell Ernst
$12.81   Used & New from: $0.39
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)

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cambridge reader "cambridgearea" (cambridge, ma United States)
Qualifications: feminist mom
Last updated: 1/2/11
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