Second grade girls are a very diverse lot. Interests can range from earthworms to pop divas, but one thing most girls this age have in common is an everlasting love of fairies and all things sparkle. Enter Daisy Meadows, author of the incredibly popular Rainbow Magic series of books. Originally published in the UK, and slowly (at least in the minds of the “but I’ve already read the ones you have! Six times each!” girls) being released here in the US, the books have been a smashing success.
Kirsty and Rachel are two young girls who are enlisted by the fairies to help them defeat Jack Frost. Much of the magic of Fairyland stems from magical objects, such as jewels or feathers, which the malicious Jack Frost has his goblins steal in order to create mischief. Of course if all is not well in Fairyland, the effects seep over into our world as well. It’s up to Kirsty and Rachel to defeat the goblins, find the missing fairy and/or object and save the day!
Written as transitional chapter books, the series contains many pictures that can help newly independent readers create meaning. The books are probably not going to win any awards for high literature, but are excellent in terms of what they are: action-packed adventure that isn’t too scary and is almost guaranteed to make little girls beg “Can I just read one more chapter?” at bedtime.
Have you ever known – absolutely known, to the bottom of your toes – that you were capable of works of genius and phenomenal talent, if only you had the tools necessary? That’s how Zoe feels. She is positive that she is an eleven-year-old piano prodigy – now if only she had a piano to prove, it she would be famous. Instead, her house-bound father accidentally orders her an organ. Zoe is less than thrilled with the organ, a further symptom of the unfairness of life, in which her workaholic mother forgets her birthday, her best friend has abandoned her and the only other kid at school to pay any attention to her is Wheeler, an angry and lonely boy more likely to punch someone in the stomach than return a smile, and her father has panic attacks if he leaves the house.
The story is quick, moving along at a fast pace that is helped by short chapters. The characters are quirky without being outrageous, and the overall tone of the book is quite funny, while still managing to be touching at times. Our Mother/Daughter Book Club recently read this book together, and the feedback was very positive. Both the mothers and daughters enjoyed reading it, and thought that it was both humorous and true-to-life. I would recommend this book to girls who like music, funny realistic fiction, weird families, and fans of Hilary McKay.
Other Books By This Author: Linda Urban is a first time author.