Wednesday, July 04, 2007

The Fairy Chronicles

OK, get your jokes out of the way early. No, I'm not renaming my blog. Yes, I get the joke about being a fairy (far from it, if you met me.)

Honestly, I was asked to review a series of books called The Fairy Chronicles. The stories are about a world where fairies live among us disguised as ordinary nine year old girls. In the FC world, fairies are fixers, displaying courage, strength, concern, etc. as they work to protect Mother Nature (and other kids) from harm. Each fully-illustrated book is about a different fairy, with her own talents, wand and mentor. And each story has an inspiring and positive message.

The 100-page books introduce a lot of concepts and explanations along the way, sometimes at the expense of the story. While I understand that this helps set up future books, you could definitely feel the difference in writing when the author is trying to explain concepts versus the character plot lines.

My disadvantage was that I read them as an adult and didn't have that benefit of hearing a child's thoughts as the story progressed. I enjoyed the special powers and how each girl assumed the role of a different animal or flower. It felt very X-men for little girls.

What I really didn't like was the long belabored distractions into socially relevant items such as recycling. The fairies were doing something and then we divert into two pages (which is a lot in a child's book) about recycling, keeping the earth pristine and how to set up nine different bins for disposing of glass, aluminium and paper. All good things mind you; just a lot to be teaching in a small book. The story just got overwhelming with details in those parts.

I decided to the pass the books along to Clare's Dad, who has a five year named...well, Clare. Here's their review:

The books are more directed toward girls at least 8 years old I’d say, but Clare liked it (she’s five). Thanks to Tinkerbell, she’s very into fairies right now—it was probably the author’s intent to build on the popularity of Tinkerbell. (There are new Tink books out now too where she has a lot of other fairy friends and there’s a movie coming next year.) We got started on the book slowly, but once we were a few chapters into it, Clare was really excited to keep reading. She liked the flowers and insects being fairies, and likes talking about what the fairies are wearing and what their special powers are. The pictures were very popular with her obviously. The only thing she didn’t like were the gremlins. We had to convince her that we didn’t have gremlins in the house because we have enough stainless steel and vacuum cleaners—at least the author gave us that to work with.

The stories are now available for purchase at Amazon or on the site list above.

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Blogger Lola and Ava said...

Do I want to know why you were asked to review a book series aimed at 8-year-old girls? And, no, I won't make any jokes. Besides, I don't think that marigolds would look good encircling your hair. Violets would do more to bring out the blue in your eyes! Enjoy the holiday!

1:32 PM  
Blogger Dad Stuff said...

Thanks for the info. I'll have to check these out for my Sweet Pea.

Mom wants to get her off Star Wars for a little while.

10:35 PM  

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