The Prince and the Dressmaker


Book by Jen Wang

From the New York Public Library:

Writer/artist Jen Wang’s art is colorful and meticulous, so it’s no wonder she would eventually make a fashion-themed book. In a setting inspired by 19th century Europe, Frances is a poor tailor who dreams of making dresses for high society. She gets her shot when she is hired by a mysterious member of the royal family… Prince Sebastian, who secretly peruses the Bohemian nightlife as Lady Crystallia, and needs a dressmaker to work in secret.

Though there are no explicitly trans characters in the book, Sebastian’s need for self-expression, and to be seen for who he is while living in secret from his conservative parents, are easily relatable for any reader who worries the world would shun who they are most comfortable being. Wang’s bright illustrations and incredible designs for Frances’ work are eye candy for any fashionista, young or old. The central story—the maybe-it’s-just-friendship love between Frances and Sebastian—is perfectly tailored around the drive of two young people who experience bold ambitions for the first time, and search for the best way to express who they are.

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