The First Adventures of Princess Peony

In which she could meet a bear. But doesn't. But she still could.

Illustrator: Lucinda Gifford

Binding: Hardcover

Imprint: Walker Books Australia

Book 1 of Princess Peony Series

Age 5+

General Fiction

A gifty, funny illustrated series for imaginative girls, written by Nette Hilton, the author of A Proper Little Lady.

Once upon a time there was a dear little girl called Peony.
That’s P.E.O.N.Y.
And it’s me. I live in a Castle with my Dragon whose name is Totts.
That’s T.O.T.T.S
And that makes me a Princess if you really want to know.

Princess Peony is not really a princess, but she does have a pet dragon, which means she's kind of like a princess. In her first adventure, she must keep an evil troll (her brother) from trying to steal her dragon (dog)--and avoid being eaten by a bear, which is really hard work.


Nette Hilton has worked in many jobs from governess to teacher, tax clerk to receptionist/telephonist and all sorts in between. Her life as a writer began when her daughter, Emma, began to really hate going to school and she set out to write a book to help her through it. Since then, Nette has become an award-winning author with more than twenty years of experience. She grew up in Victoria but has lived in Sydney since the age of eleven.

Lucinda Gifford, illustrator of the Chook Doolan series, will be illustrating this series and giving Princess Peony and her dragon (dog) Totts lots of attitude. .


This is a book to read multiple times. It is so engaging children will want to rush through it the first time but it is also a book to savour. The plotting, characterisation and humour are superb. It is a wonderful place for young readers to share and develop imagination and revel in pretend-play and role-play alongside Princess Peony. The First Adventures of Princess Peony is fun and exciting and has a most satisfying story arc. It is a triumph.

Boomerang Books

I am sure The First Adventures of Princess Peony will definitely not be her last.

Kids' Book Review

This is a series that encourages imaginative play. Peony is an ordinary girl who sees herself as a princess. This isn’t a game to her; it’s real. And readers can imagine their own royal worlds, especially with the tips and quizzes on princess-y sorts of things in the back of each book.

Practical Parenting

Highly recommended for pre-schoolers, early primary schoolers, emergent readers and those of us struggling to accept the little princess within.

Boomerang Books

Highly recommended.

Glam Adelaide

Nette Hilton’s The first adventures of Princess Peony is a delightfully funny picture book perfect for sharing with young princesses and princes.


Princess Peony is a royal that I can get behind.


This delightful story about siblings getting along… will entrance younger readers


I recommend this book for 5-8 year olds… it is an excellent text for beginner readers to develop their reading confidence and learn about the role of illustrations in storytelling

Reading Time


Speech Pathology Book of the Year Awards, 5-8 Years
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