Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews



Alisha Niehaus
For ages 10 and up
Dorling Kindersley, 2009   ISBN: 978-0756650957

Jenny and James have a father who believes that he is a fairy "expert." He has written a book about all the things that he has learned about fairies. Jenny and James got to travel around the world with their parents so that their father could look for fairies. The children feel that it would be cruel and unusual to inflict their father's hefty tome on kids, so they have decided to write their own fairy guide.

The book is broken up into four chapters. The first chapter gives you a little background information on fairies. Here you will find out how to find fairies, how to protect yourself from them, and more. The second chapter contains excerpts from Jenny and James' father's book. Here you will find out all about the different kinds of  "little people" and other magical beings. You will learn about elves, mermaids, pixies, gnomes, dryads, hobgoblins, and others.

The third chapter contains the journals that Jenny and James wrote as they traveled around the world looking for fairies. This section is particularly interesting, and readers will discover a wealth of fascinating facts about fairies and their kin. For example, did you know that Welsh fathers are sometimes kidnapped by fairies and then sent home covered in mud? Did you know that Irish pookas are particularly fond of potatoes?

The last section in the book looks at the many ways in which fairies have been portrayed in books and movies over the years. Here you can read about the Spiderwick fairies, the elves in the Lord of the Rings, and Titania in Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream.

This book is a must for fairy lovers of all ages. Packed with illustrations, maps, and so much more, it is the kind of title you can dip into whenever you start getting a hankering for some fairy facts and lore.