WARRIOR PRINCESS: The Story of Khutulun by Sally Deng, Perfect Picture Book Friday #PPBF

Today I am over the moon to share WARRIOR PRINCESS, The Story of Khutulun by Sally Deng. Sally illustrates for many publications, including the New York Times, The Atlantic, NPR, Vice, the New Yorker and Condé Nast Traveler. I am so proud she is the illustrator of my first picture book YUSRA SWIMS, and an author/illustrator in her own right based in Los Angeles.

Her first book, SKYWARD: The Story of female pilots in WW II released in 2018 and won the 2019 Outstanding Work of Creative Non-fiction, Children’s Literature Council of Southern California and WARRIOR PRINCESS, her second the picture book, released last year. To find out more about Sally, check her website here.

Title: WARRIOR PRINCESS: The Story of Khutulun

Author/Illustrator: Sally Deng

Published by Farrar Straus Giroux

Ages: 5 – 7 years

Themes: Asian history, Biography

Synopsis: (from Amazon)

An empowering and informative picture book biography about Khutulun, the great-great granddaughter of Genghis Khan, and how she defied the expectations of her time to become commander of the Khan’s army.

A story based on the life and legend of Khutulun, Warrior Princess is an inspiring tale of a princess who realizes that sometimes the best way to serve one’s community is to stay true to oneself and defy their expectations, brought to life by Sally Deng’s lush, sweeping paintings and additional back matter about Khutulun’s life.


In the moonlit grasslands of ancient times, a baby girl took her first breath.

Her father, the khan, cradled her in his arms.

“Here is my daughter, child of the moon, ” he proclaimed.

“Khutulun, Princess of Mongolia!”


I love picture book biographies, and this one is a must-read. The little known story, based on the life and legend of Khutulun, takes us from her birth to her becoming commander of the Khan’s army. It is informative and empowering. Khutulun and her fourteen brothers trained every day to become warriors. Her tribe had a saying “A Mongol without a horse is like a bird without wings.” She was a proficient horsewoman, warrior and sportswoman – her favorite pastime was wrestling! This girl worked hard and made her way to the very top of the Khan’s army, as Deng says so eloquently in her Author’s note “Khutulun lived a life she paved for herself.” There is a glossary at the back of Mongol words used in the text. Deng’s language is lyrical and her art simply beautiful.


Learn how to draw a horse step by step here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wAsmiu5wh4Q

A horse coloring page drawn by Sally

Thanks for stopping by. Please check your library for a copy of Warrior Princess: The Story of Khutulun, or order one here. I promise you won’t regret it!


2 thoughts on “WARRIOR PRINCESS: The Story of Khutulun by Sally Deng, Perfect Picture Book Friday #PPBF

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s