'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Sunday 13 March 2011

Review: Fairy School Drop-Out

When I picked up the first book in this new fairy series, I was really really scared I would find myself cloaked by stereotypical, formulaic fairy fluff. But hey presto! The magic of this book is in its avoidance of such formula, but it’s also in its delightful storytelling and most of all – its clever nuances that make good books really really good.

Elly Knottleweed-Eversprightly is not your typical fairy. She’s not very good at being one, actually. She’s about to head to her third fairy school – The Mossy Blossom Academy for Young Fairies – because she was expelled from the first two.

That’s right. Elly’s not the best fairy. Her wand is breaking down, she’s susceptible to flyrus (that’s a fairy virus affecting the wings) and there’s probably no fairy rule she hasn’t been able to break.

But isn’t there charm to be found in imperfection?

A skateboarding fairy who detests tutus and boring old spells may not be your perfect fairy, but it sure is fun following her adventures (particularly when she turns Synchronised Flying instructors purple) as she attempts to have herself expelled from her boring old school.

But will Elly’s plans backfire? And will she be one of the few fairies actually sent to a human school?

Witty, charming and enormously creative, Badger has created a series with characters that are relatable and endearing. But what I love most about this series is how reminiscent their tone is to the fiction books of yore. That combination of humour, magic (fairy or no), creativity and witty storytelling is a feat in balance… and balance is something Badger does so very well.

It was a pleasure to meet an independent, true-to-herself fairy in young Elly. I’m really hoping she flies by my house sometime soon.

Title: Fairy School Drop-Out
Author: Meredith Badger
Publisher: Hardie Grant Egmont, $12.95
Publication Date: 1 February 2011
ISBN: 9781921759802
Format: Paperback
For ages: 6 - 10
Type: Junior Fiction

Also in this series: