The Great Sock Secret, by Susan Whelan & Gwynneth Jones

Oh no! Sarah thought. She knew where all the odd socks were, but she didn’t want her mother to find them.

Sarah’s mother – like almost every mother – is puzzled by the number of odd socks in the washing basket. She decides it’s time to go searching for all the missing socks. But Sarah is worried. She knows that the socks are being used by fairies – as sleeping bags, parachutes, tow ropes, toys and more. She doesn’t want her mother to find the socks – or the fairies.

The Great Sock Secret is a gently humorous take on one of life’s great mysteries – where all the odd socks go. Young fairy fans will love spotting the fairies that Sarah knows about but her mother is oblivious to, behind the furniture, under beds, in cupboards and, sometimes, in plain sight. Illustrations are bright and semi-realisitic, with each fairy unique.

Lots of fun.

The Great Sock Secret , by Susan Whelan & Gwynneth Jones
EK Books, 2016
ISBN 9781925335248

Lilli-Pilli's Sister, by Anna Branford, illustrated by Linda Catchlove

“I’m definitely going to have a sister. I can feel it in my wings.”

Lilli-Pilli is very excited. Mum is going to have a new baby, and Lilli-Pilli is sure it will be a sister. But as she helps to collect soft things for the baby’s cradle, her friends and family remind her that the baby could actually be a brother. Lilli-Pilli says she doesn’t mind, but could her senses be wrong? When she returns home, there is a surprise waiting for he r- in fact two surprises. She has a baby sister and a baby brother.

Lilli-Pilli’s Sister is a delightful story about new siblings, friendship and family. Lilli-Pilli and her parents are beautifully contemporary fairies, living in an Australian bush setting. Illustrations are whimsical but not saccharine, in watercolour suitable for the gentle nature of the story.

Suitable for any fairy-loving youngster.

Lilli-Pilli’s Sister, by Anna Branford & Linda Catchlove
Walker Books, 2014
ISBN 9781921977589

Available from good bookstores and online.

The Fairy Who Wouldn’t Fly retold by Bronwyn Davies

The Fairy-who-wouldn’t-fly loved to lie about all day in her hammock amid the swaying blossoms.

She listened to the wind and watched the clouds sailing high overhead. She watched the bees gathering honey, and the birds sipping nectar from the flowers. When she folded her wings and closed her eyes, she looked just like a dried leaf, so no one could see her.

The other fairies, their bright, beautiful wings flashing in the sunlight, worked hard in the bush. They lifted up the heads of flowers after rain, helped lame beetles over bush tracks, and saved silly baby birds who fell out of their nests before they were ready to fly. They helped to keep the bushland and all its creatures healthy and strong.

The Fairy-who-wouldn’t-fly loved to lie about all day in her hammock amid the swaying blossoms.

She listened to the wind and watched the clouds sailing high overhead. She watched the bees gathering honey, and the birds sipping nectar from the flowers. When she folded her wings and closed her eyes, she looked just like a dried leaf, so no one could see her.

The other fairies, their bright, beautiful wings flashing in the sunlight, worked hard in the bush. They lifted up the heads of flowers after rain, helped lame beetles over bush tracks, and saved silly baby birds who fell out of their nests before they were ready to fly. They helped to keep the bushland and all its creatures healthy and strong.

The Fairy Who Wouldn’t Fly is a retelling of a 1945 Pixie O’Harris story, which incorporates her original illustrations and includes additional images from the National Library of Australia’s collection. This young fairy prefers to sit and think about her world. She wonders where the wind came from, how seeds knew what kind of flower to become, why she hadn’t seen the Leaf-cutter Bee for so long. But the Fairy Queen considers her lazy and sends her to the Woodn’t to be with other creatures who don’t do as they ought. There she meets an assortment of creatures, all banished. She finds herself becoming as grumpy as they are before discovering the talent of each in the rescue of a little lost boy. They want to return home but don’t want to be compelled to behave in ways that feel wrong to them. News of their adventure wins a reprieve from the Fairy Queen and they return home. Brave Fairy asks the Queen to accept their differences and allow them to be themselves, before asking for a final favour.

Bronwyn Davies says The Fairy Who Wouldn’t Fly was her favourite book when she was a child. Here she written her own version of the story and kept the original illustrations. In place of the original ending, where Fairy returns to Fairyland compliant, Davies offers a celebration of difference and acceptance of those who might sometimes be less easy to understand. The Fairy Who Wouldn’t Fly is a rich collection of art, both the original and extras, and a story sure to delight fairy-fans. Additional images are fully referenced in the final pages. It’s a fabulous way to share NLA art and entice young visitors and artists. This is a sumptuous hardcover sure to win many new fans to a well-loved story.

 

The Fairy Who Wouldn’t Fly, retold by Bronwyn Davies NLA Publishing 2014 ISBN: 9780642278517

review by Claire Saxby, Children’s author and bookseller

www.clairesaxby.com

The Little Fairy Sister, by Ida Rentoul Outhwaite and Grenbry Outhwaite

“Nancy!” said Bridget suddenly, and as she said she sat bolt upright. Her eyes had been closed the moment before, and when she had opened them she had seen a most exquisitely-dressed little girl standing by the hammock on tip-toe looking down upon her. It was extraordinary, but she was sure, perfectly certain, it must have been Nancy.

Once Bridget had a sister. But when they were very young, Nancy ailed, and, Bridget’s mother tells her, went back to live in the Country of Fairies. Bridget loves this story and longs to meet her sister and visit the land of fairies. One magical afternoon Nancy comes to visit and takes her on an adventure with the fairies.

The Little Fairy Sister is a classic children’s book, newly re-released by the National Library of Australia from an early edition of the book. Whilst the story may not be known to all readers, many will be visually familiar with Ida Rentoul Outhwaite’s fairy paintings which have been used in books, on murals, in advertising materials and on galleries since the 1920s.

Whilst the story may be a little dated – particularly the euphemistic handling of the death of a sibling – it is also both charming and enlightening as a sample of the literature of its time. Outhwaite’s illustrations are reproduced in a mixture of full colour and black and white, and the book is a sturdy hardcover with colour slip case. An enchanting offering for the lover of fairies, art and classic children’s books.

 

The Little Fairy Sister

The Little Fairy Sister, by Ida Rentoul Outhwaite and Grenbry Outhwaite
This edition NLA, 2013
ISBN 9780642277725

Available from good bookstores or online.

Pearlie and the Flamenco Fairy by Wendy Harmer ill Gypsy Taylor

It was a bright and beautiful afternoon when Pearlie flew into sunny Spain.

From the back of Queen Emerald’s magic ladybird she had a wonderful view of the plazas, fountains and the royal palace in the lovely old city of Madrid.

It was a bright and beautiful afternoon when Pearlie flew into sunny Spain.

From the back of Queen Emerald’s magic ladybird she had a wonderful view of the plazas, fountains and the royal palace in the lovely old city of Madrid.

Pearlie is off on a new adventure, leaving her home in Central Park and winging all the way to Spain. After she lands in The Royal Botanic Garden, Pearlie meets up with her new friend, Florentina. Florentina has a surprise for Pearlie: she has organised a party so Pearlie can meet all her friends. But in a less welcome surprise, Florentina has planned dancing lessons and a dancing exhibition for the party. Pearlie is anxious, when it comes to dancing, she has two left feet. She must quickly learn to dance or she will embarrass herself and her friend. As the party time approaches, Pearlie’s anxiety grows. <a href=”http://www.fishpond.com.au/product_info.php?ref=271&id=9781742755403&affiliate_banner_id=1″ target=”_blank”><img src=”http://www.fishpond.com.au/affiliate_show_banner.php?ref=271&affiliate_pbanner_id=46024611″ border=”0″ alt=”Pearlie and the Flamenco Fairy”></a> is fully illustrated.

It’s very exciting to visit friends, particularly when you are keen to see more of their beautiful home. But it can also be daunting if you discover that they are expecting you to join them in dancing when you have no skills in that area. But Pearlie wants to please her friends and puts all her energy into learning the unfamiliar steps. And she’d be happy to be able to dance as beautifully as her friend. But lest the reader think Pearlie is being too compliant, the visiting fairy takes control of her outfit for the night. She takes comfort from looking gorgeous, even if she’s sure she won’t be able to dance well. Pearlie, of course, triumphs as only a fairy so far from home could! Recommended for lower primary readers.

Pearlie and the Flamenco Fairy
Pearlie and the Flamenco Fairy, Wendy Harmer, ill Gypsy Taylor
Random House Australia 2012 ISBN: 9781742755403

review by Claire Saxby, Children’s Author

www.clairesaxby.com

Avaialable from good bokstores or online from Fishpond.

Pearlie in Paris, by Wendy Harmer & Gypsy Taylor

Pearlie arrives in Paris for a holiday with Fifi, a fairy who lives in the garden of the Royal Palace (Jardin du Palais Royal). Instead she is met by a flustered, slightly bossy French fairy. After an initial misunderstanding, Pearlie helps Fifi prepare for the showing of her new Spring fashion collection

 

It was springtime in Paris! From high on Queen Emerald’s magic ladybird, Pearlie could see many grand buildings, the Eiffel Tower, and beautiful parks bursting with fresh flowers.

 

‘Hurly-burly!’ sang Pearlie. She was thrilled to be visiting one of the world’s loveliest cities when it was at its prettiest.

 

Pearlie arrives in Paris for a holiday with Fifi, a fairy who lives in the garden of the Royal Palace (Jardin du Palais Royal). Instead she is met by a flustered, slightly bossy French fairy. After an initial misunderstanding, Pearlie helps Fifi prepare for the showing of her new Spring fashion collection. Pearlie is overwhelmed by the gorgeous, if slightly impractical for her, gowns. When disaster strikes overnight, in the shape of a runaway snail, it’s up to Pearlie to save the day. Illustrations are full colour and share the ‘joie de vivre’ of Paris in the springtime.

 
Pearlie in Paris is the 14th adventure with Pearlie, the fairy who normally resides in an inner Sydney park. She’s a hard-working fairy, so it’s good she also gets to take holidays. Even if, on those holidays she also gets to solve problems and avert disasters. Pearlie is a very good-hearted fairy, never taking offence and always finding ways to help out. But she does get to tour around Paris in the end, even if it’s not with her new friend, Fifi, who is presumably too busy filling orders after her spectacular fashion show! Fans of Pearlie will enjoy this instalments and new readers of this series will want to search out other Pearlie adventures. Recommended for newly independent readers and for younger children as a read-to.

Pearlie in Paris

Pearlie in Paris, Wendy Harmer & Gypsy Taylor
Random House 2011
ISBN: 9781741663808

 

review by Claire Saxby, Children’s Author

www.clairesaxby.com

This book can be purchased online from Fishpond.

April Underhill, Tooth Fairy, by Bob Graham

Not so long ago, a tooth fairy took a call on her mobile.
“April Underhill here.”
…You want US? We shall be there. I PROMISE.”

April and Esme Underhill are tooth fairies – but they’ve never before collected a tooth – usually their parents do it. But when April gets a phonecall requesting her and Esme, she is sure they can work together to complete their first tooth collection.

April Underhill, Tooth Fairy is a beautiful story of two young sisters learning the ropes as toothfairies – and also a story about being empowered and supported by loving parents. Children will love the fairies who, instead of being pink and frilly stereotypes, are instead contemporary, in bright colours. Their house nestles near the motorway beside a tree stump and there are hints at the changing of times brought about by modern ‘progress’.

Bob Graham is a master of the picture book form – with gently quirky story lines and illustrations. April Underhill, Tooth Fairy is delightful.

April Underhill, Tooth Fairy April Underhill, Tooth Fairy, by Bob Graham
Walker Books, 2010
ISBN 9781406321555

This book can be purchased online from Fishpond.

Fairies, by Alison Maloney

…when the first baby laughed for the first time, the laugh broke into a thousand pieces and they all went skipping about, and that was the beginning of fairies. And now when every new baby is born, its first laugh becomes a fairy. So there ought to be one fairy for every boy or girl. (from Peter Pan, JM Barrie)

As children know, and adults rarely understand, fairies are everywhere – in your garden, in the woods beyond and even in your house! Although fairies can be found in every country in the mortal world, their true home is the far-off kingdom of Fairyland. This magical realm, which no human can ever reach, is the birthplace of all fairies.

Fairies: A Magical Guide to the Enchanted Realm is, as the name suggests, about fairies. Everything you may have known and more is here. Discover different types of fairies, the places they live, their personalities and behaviours. There are nods to all manner of fairy tales and famous fairies, including Tinker Bell, Thumbelina and the fairies who guard Sleeping Beauty. Fairies includes whimsical illustrations on full colour pages. Fairies are pictured at work and at play. There are suggestions on how best to welcome a fairy and how to keep fairy homes clean.

Fairies are eternally fascinating, particularly to small girls. Being difficult to see presents few problems to those who love fairy folk of all kinds. Fairies describes fairies who gather teeth and fairies who help with farmwork. There’s the odd mischievous and grumpy fairy, but most are kind, good, helpful, beautiful and magical. Sure to be a hit with all fairy-folk.

Fairies: A Magical Guide to the Enchanted Realm Alison Maloney ill Patricia Moffett
Allen & Unwin 2009
ISBN: 9781742371085

review by Claire Saxby, Children’s Author
www.clairesaxby.com

This book can be purchased online from Fishpond. Buying through this link supports Aussiereviews.

My First Fairies, by Jen Watts

This sparkly four-book set of board books is presented as a boxed set. The individual titles introduce the characters from the ABC television series. Main characters Rhapsody and Harmony have their own books. Rhapsody’s book is pink, her favourite colour. Harmony’s book is also in her favourite colour, purple. Fans can discover about their favourite characters. Each of the other two titles features two characters from the series. Twinkle and Wizzy share a book, as do Barnaby and Elf. Their individual personalities are detailed, and the attributes they share. The background colour is consistent throughout each title and matches the cover. Characters float above a bed of flowers.

My First Fairies is a four-book collection of sturdy eight-page board books, tucked neatly into a sparkly pink box. Each title is small, almost square with rounded edges ideal for little hands to hold and ‘read’. Readers will recognise the characters from the television series and learn more about their individual traits. Each double spread includes a simple statement on the left and an illustration on the opposing page. There is no story as such, rather the intent is to familiarise with the nature of each character, their strengths, and for some, their challenges. For example, not all Wizzy’s spells work quite the way he intends. Recommended for preschoolers.

My First Fairies Jen Watts
ABC Books 2008
ISBN: 9780733322631

The Fairies Song and Dance Book

We welcome you to Fairyland
Come and join along
With our special fairy friends
And have some fairy fun.

Full of sparkles and fairy characters, The Fairies Song and Dance Book is a an offering sure to impress girls aged between 3 and 7, particularly those who are familiar with the ABC Television series The Fairies

The book comes with a CD recording of fourteen fairy songs, with the lyrics featuring in the book alongside photographic images from the television show. Young fans can learn the words to the songs featured in the series, and those not yet familiar with the television show will find this an enticement to watch.

Lots of fairy fun.

The Fairies: Song and Dance Book (The Fairies S.)

The Fairies Song and Dance Book
ABC Books, 2008

This book can be purchased online from Fishpond. Buying through this link supports Aussiereviews.