I Am Princess X

I Am Princess X
Written by Cherie Priest

Publisher’s Summary:
Once upon a time, two best friends created a princess together. Libby drew the pictures, May wrote the tales, and their heroine, Princess X, slayed all the dragons and scaled all the mountains their imaginations could conjure.

Once upon a few years later, Libby was in the car with her mom, driving across the Ballard Bridge on a rainy night. When the car went over the side, Libby passed away, and Princess X died with her.

Once upon a now: May is sixteen and lonely, wandering the streets of Seattle, when she sees a sticker slapped in a corner window.

Princess X?

When May looks around, she sees the Princess everywhere: Stickers. Patches. Graffiti. There’s an entire underground culture, focused around a webcomic at IAmPrincessX.com. The more May explores the webcomic, the more she sees disturbing similarities between Libby’s story and Princess X online. And that means that only one person could have started this phenomenon – her best friend, Libby, who lives.

Primary Source Pairing:
May is devastated after the loss of her friend and creative partner. Imagine her surprise when their character, Princess X, starts showing up around her town. In working with Trick, the resident tech support of her building, May is able to find out more about Princess X online. Who is putting May and Libby’s character online is a mystery – one that May MUST solve. Using the source code for the HTML and clues embedded in the website gets May one step closer to finding out who is posting Princess X and if it could be possible that Libby is still alive. For this primary source pairing, invite students to take a slow and close look at the source code for the IAmPrincessX.com website, a real website promoting the book and the webcomic featured in the book. Use this as an introduction to website creation and HTML coding.

Questions for Discussion:

  • Describe what you see.
  • What do you notice first?
  • How much of the text can you read? What does it say?
  • What do you see that looks strange or unfamiliar?
  • How are the words arranged?
  • What do you see on the page besides writing?
  • What other details can you see?
  • What can you learn from examining this?
  • Check out the source code from other websites. What is the same? What is different?

Book Cover and Summary: Follett
Source code: Screenshot taken from IAmPrincessX.com