Cinnamon can tell fortunes and dance with a bear, but she dreams of being a princess. When Princess Cyprina invites her to live in the palace, Cinnamon agrees and learns the hard way that there are things more precious than a crown of gold.

For years I played with the idea of writing a story about a dancing bear. Usually, he was Ursa major, the bear in the stars. It was when I brought him down to earth that The Gypsy Princess took shape. It is the most autobiographical of my books. Like all little girls I dreamed of being a princess. It took me half a lifetime to appreciate and use the gifts that I had been born with.

Almost everyone in this book is a portrait of a friend or family member. You can see what Princess Leora looks like all grown up. Melissa is the Gypsy girl with her arm around Cinnamon's Auntie on the last page.
Her husband, Chris is the gypsy who plays the violin.
My husband, Brian's in this book too.
Hannah is the real name of the girl who posed as Cinnamon.
Sarah is the real name of the girl who posed as Princess Cyprina.
Leah and Lee are the names of her princess friends.
The golden gate is modeled on an iron gate in front of the Parliament buildings in Ottawa.

The pirate boat
The blanket from Something From Nothing
A tiny, tiny tip of the balloon tree
A golden apple
One of Jillian's pigs
Little Blue Ben
The Balloon Tree book
Princess Leora's dog

The Gypsy Princess. Scholastic Canada, 1995; as La princesse gitane, translated by Christiane Duchesne, Scholastic Canada, 1995
ISBN 0-590-12389-0

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