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

Thursday 3 September 2020

Review: Roxy and Jones: The Great Fairytale Cover-Up

What if fairytales were based on real events? 

I don’t mean metaphors for important life lessons, but actual events that have been wiped from the memories of the general population?

Roxy Humperdinck lives in a world that is magic-free — or so she thinks. She lives in poverty with Gretel, her older half sister in the kingdom of Illustria, struggling on her sister’s meagre wages as a toilet cleaner for the Ministry of Soup.

When Roxy stumbles on a trapdoor that leads to the cellar of the Ministry, she meets the mysterious Jones Jones, a girl who has a habit of leaving one shoe behind wherever she goes. 

Jones is certainly not after a handsome prince, she’s got more important things to worry about. She’s after a secret book and can’t reveal too many details to Roxy — but Roxy accidentally finds it and the race is on!

Roxy has no supernatural powers, but her photographic memory comes in handy when the mysterious book goes missing. Aided by a fairy godmother who has a valuable knack of turning vegetables into vehicles — an eggplant into a motorcycle (hey, why should pumpkins and carriages always take centre stage?), Roxy and Jones embark on a roller coaster ride of secret codes, cover ups and mysterious people (the BOBI) who have magical talents and are aware of the true identity of seemingly everyday people — including Gretel.

But where there are innocent kids living in poverty, there will be wicked witches and one is hot on their tail, following the cryptic clues buried in the book that leads to the powerful Seventh Stone.

This is quite a funny read, part homage and part send up of the fairy tales we all grew up with. Roxy and Jones are smart and sassy heroines and I enjoyed their camaraderie and witty banter.

Whilst the story is resolved in this book, it leaves room for a sequel.

 Roxy and Jones: The Great Fairytale Cover-Up
Author: Angela Woolfe
Publisher: Walker Books, $14.99  
Publication Date: 1 July 2020
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9781406391374
For ages: 8 - 12
Type: Middle Grade Fiction