A black and white picture book aimed at middle-grade readers, featuring poems that give a distinctly Australian twist to traditional fairy tales.
Byford-based poet Timmer has joined forces with Perth illustrator Mutton and local press Jasper Books to turn fairytales on their heads. Taking a distinct Australian theme, the collaborators open with a classic, as an Aussie princess squashes a cane-toad Prince Charming with a boot, crying "girls don't need a prince". The turnabout antics continue throughout, with corkers such as the ballad of the Seven Dwarves, whose new housemate turns the miners' abode into a sheila shack. Aimed at primary school-aged children, Timmer's regionally themed children's picture book is more than just the same-old same-old, making it a nice addition to the bedtime story roster.
– Amanda Ellis, The West Australian
As a book for children aged eight to 12 Toughen Up, Princess is full of easy and understanable language. The poem of the same title is gasp out loud worthy and Sioban has changed the rhythm of each poem so they do not sound the same. Parents will find enjoyment reading them to their children and will take notice of the illustrations, which are creative and fun, regardless they are not in colour.