I Am Princess X by Cherie Priest
I have walked past this book countless times. It has an eye-catching spine and intriguing title but it still took me forever to pick it up. Even though I’ve read Cherie Priest’s steampunk thriller Boneshaker and know that she’s an amazing author, it took forever. Even after placing the Rebecca Caudill 2018 award sticker on it’s spine, it took forever.
What was I waiting for? The right time to need a book about badass teenage girls who are going to bring down an evil genius. Well, maybe not a genius but he is definitely evil.
This story is awesome! May and Libby met on the playground in elementary school. After bonding over a love of drawing and storytelling, they create brave and amazing character named Princess X and her magical world became their escape. Together, they created an entire universe where Princess X lived in a haunted house and fought monsters. Until one day, Libby was gone. Libby and her mother died after their car drove off a bridge. Days later, Libby’s body was finally found. The crash took more than May’s best friend, it also took away Princess X and the escape those books created.
But three years later, May notices a sticker on a shop window that will completely upend her world. The sticker has a drawing of Princess X on it-her Princess X. Who found Libby and May’s books? Why now?
With the help of computer hacking neighbor, May sets off to solve the mystery of Princess X and her connections to Libby. What if Libby is still alive?
This story is amazing! The characters are great and the story moves very quickly. May has a lot to deal with-just like any other teenager. Her parents are divorced, friends are hard to make, and trust doesn’t come easily. But May is smart and brave and goes to great lengths to solve the mystery of her missing friend. She teams up with Patrick, a young man who lives in her building and who recently lost a scholarship after he hacked into his school’s grading system and messed with an ex-girlfriend’s grades. Patrick isn’t evil-he’s just impulsive and made a crappy decision. What he thinks will be a quick way to make some money fixing May’s computer quickly turns into something bigger when he hears about Princess X. He’s read all the webcomics and knows the details of the story. Together, the two of them face some pretty big obstacles in solving the riddles found throughout the story.
I especially loved that the two were never romantically linked. I really appreciate when authors keep friendships platonic and let young woman just be themselves around others.
The writing is great, the story moves quickly, and there’s lots of action to keep the pages turning. It’s also approved by The Kid. If this sounds like a book you’d enjoy, you can find a copy at your favorite Library like I did, or pick one up here and help support the site:
Full disclosure time: I borrowed my copy from the Library. Always check your Library first and suggest titles for your Librarian to order! We like suggestions.