cover image From the Notebooks of a Middle School Princess

From the Notebooks of a Middle School Princess

Meg Cabot. Feiwel and Friends, $16.99 (192p) ISBN 978-1-250-06602-2

The nation of Genovia gains a new resident in this amusing spin-off of Cabot’s Princess Diaries series: self-effacing, biracial Olivia, a 12-year-old aspiring wildlife artist who discovers that she is the half-sister of Princess Mia Thermopolis. Because Olivia’s long-dead mother insisted that Olivia live in New Jersey with her aunt and uncle (who are only slightly more benign than Harry Potter’s kin), Olivia doesn’t know that the father she has never met is the prince of Genovia. Princess Mia dramatically appears at Olivia’s private school just as an angry classmate, Annabelle, is preparing to pummel her; she whisks Olivia off to Manhattan to meet her father and Grandmère, who wastes no time in informing Olivia how a princess ought to comport herself. Though there’s a bump in the road to Olivia’s new royal digs, she at last lands in Genovia, where plans for Mia’s wedding are in full swing. Text-message exchanges and Cabot’s own b&w cartoons further enliven Olivia’s entertaining and candid notebook entries, which will have readers looking forward to her future escapades. Ages 8–12. Agent: Laura Langlie. (May)