There’s a special place in my heart for certain stories. Petronella by Jay Williams is one of them. It is, simply put, one of those “feminist fairy tales” put out in 1973, which turns the tables on the “prince rescues princess” stories, and turns the tables on it again. I won’t say how, but sometimes you need a prince among men, rather than a titled one.
I discovered this story in my high school library. I wondered why it was there, knowing it was a fairy tale, but maybe there was a purpose to putting it there. It was in a thin, tall book, with some very cute pictures. It was drawn, I think, by Tomi Ungerer. I enjoyed the story and its twists. (If you did not know before, the case is, I like a good, twisted story.) I forgot about the story until recently, when I got curious as to how well it has been represented online.
I have looked all over the internet, and it seems that Petronella has barely scratched the surface of the internet power machine. All I seem to get is a few book covers and a few pictures, which are not pictures I recognize. One was illustrated quite recently, while the other seemed to have been illustrated quite unusually in the 1970s. I surmised the 1970s one was original. I was a little saddened to discover this story has precious little inspiration online. I also went to art sites, and found no representation. I am a little rusty in drawing, since I have been away from it for such a long time. I tried to draw the character Albion the Enchanter’s portrait, and it came out bland and horrible. Maybe I need to practice a little more.
I think Petronella would be a great fairy tale to get to the silver screen…if only I knew how. Maybe I could give a crack at writing a script for it? Of course, I might need help with dialogue, being autistic and all…
Sorry I am not currently giving any credence to “Harry Potter” or “Frozen”‘s sister princesses. (“Let it go, let it go…” Got that stuck in your head again? I can be so wicked.) I just think we need to see what stories we can get to the public before they disappear in the strange way that stories get lost in time.