by Laura Amy Schlitz
Brief little tale about a fairy who lives in a garden. But it\’s not sweet- this is a story of survival skills- miniature-sized. The fairy in the book looses her wings, and all the other fairies fly off without her. She is forced to figure out how to survive on her own- surrounded by all sorts of threats and obstacles. She\’s not a very nice character at first- determined and resourceful yes, but also demanding, selfish and a bit vindictive. A feisty little fairy, which suited her situation very well. Through the story she has to find a safe shelter and avoid aggressive creatures- the spider and a preying mantis are particularly dangerous. She\’s terrified of bats. She coerces a squirrel into doing her bidding but then sees a hummingbird in flight and is determined to make the bird carry her around. The hummingbird doesn\’t give in- she has duties, a nest of eggs to protect. The fairy has to re-think her approach if she really wants to get the bird to cooperate… She also has to learn how to channel and use her magic powers. That aspect of the story wasn\’t nearly as interesting to me as her interactions with the animals, but it gives her some security because she can do things in spite of her small size to defend herself or overcome difficulties.
I was kind of surprised how much I enjoyed this one. I thought from the cover it would be cute- but it was much more serious. I particularly liked that the details about the wildlife in the garden were very true to nature- the hummingbird is very territorial and falls into a state of torpor during the night, for example. The squirrel was such a character.
Borrowed from the public library.
Rating: 3/5 122 pages, 2010