Cannonball Read IV

A bunch of Pajibans reading and reviewing and honoring AlabamaPink.

Fofo’s #CBR4 Review #20: The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making by Catherynne M. Valente

Target: Catherynne M. Valente’s The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making

Profile: Children’s Literature, Fantasy

The Girl who Circumnavigated Fairyland is, quite simply, delightful.  It is a charming fantasy romp that successfully blends the darkness of traditional Faerie stories with the bright and airy fantasy of a child’s adventure.  Valente successfully recaptures the illusive wonderment of Narnia, strips it of its preachy messages and returns it to the reader, bursting with clever thoughts and language.  The Girl who Circumnavigated Fairyland is a perfect modern successor to the fantasies of Lewis Carol, C.S. Lewis and L. Frank Baum.

The story’s protagonist is September, a young girl from Nebraska who is spirited away to Fairyland.  Unfortunately, Fairyland is currently under the rule of the Marquess, who vanquished the old queen and imposed a series of bureaucratic laws on the normally fun-loving citizens.  Fairyland does continue to operate, but everything is just a little bit off.  September is stopped by a customs gnome at the border, and every creature capable of flight has had their wings bound in iron chains.

Read the rest of the review…

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3 thoughts on “Fofo’s #CBR4 Review #20: The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making by Catherynne M. Valente

  1. I think you’ve hit the nail on the head with why I liked this book but wasn’t in LOVE with it, and it’s that I like my fantasy stories to have meaning. The Narnia books were favorites of mine when I was a kid precisely because they were fun stories that also made me feel like I was getting something worth while out of them at the same time. And I felt like that was missing in this book. To each his own, I guess, and Valente is a magical wordsmith. Man, that woman knows how to construct a sentence.

  2. I don’t think it’s quite fair to say there’s /no/ message in here. Just that the message isn’t preachy, and it isn’t something that anyone should need to be taught. That your path is your own and the only thing you can do is own it. It’s a useful message, just not a loud one.

  3. sevenstories on said:

    This is isn’t out in the UK yet so I was super excited to get a proof copy this week on a training course. It’s definitely going near the top of my pile.

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