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Happy Book Birthday to Ellen Booraem’s SMALL PERSONS WITH WINGS!
I won a galley of SPWW from ktliterary’s blog Ask Daphne, and while I don’t normally write book reviews (make that: never write book reviews), I thought I should for this one, since I got to read it first (nah nah!).
I loved this book!
From the mention of a My Little Pony and the word “FWAP!” in the first chapter, through all the twists and turns of a fairytale that is not about fairies, to the grandeur of the last page, SPWW was an endearing, entertaining story about reality, and how much in life is what we want to imagine it to be.
Thirteen-year-old Mellie Turpin once declared to her kindergarten class that she had a fairy living in her bedroom. But before she could bring him in for show-and-tell, he disappeared. Years later, she is still trying to live it down, taunted mercilessly by classmates who call her “Fairy Fat.”
Her imagination got her into this. She’s determined to keep it turned off.
When her parents inherit an inn and the family moves to a new town, Mellie sees a chance to finally leave all that fairy nonsense behind. Little does she know that the inn is overrun with…you guessed it. Oh brother.
There’s no such thing as fairies, she keeps telling herself. And if there were, they wouldn’t hurt a fly.
The best thing about this novel is the flipped-on-its-head notion that reality is not real at all, but only what we want to see in life. Mellie struggles to “imagine what’s real” after spending half of her childhood trying to learn how to turn her imagination off. She likes to recite facts (especially about art and artists) and make lists, because those things are real, and it is absolutely heartbreaking to listen to her talk about losing her childlike imagination.
“I had to…stop making up stories to put myself to sleep.” (pg 24, galley version)
This book hit a deep chord in me, and certainly will in any other imaginative person (small or not!).
For a chance to win my galley copy of this book (because I’m buying my own copy today!), I’m sending you on a treasure hunt! The Parvi Pennati (Small Persons with Wings) have hidden my galley somewhere in this blog, and you have to find it. Since I won the contest for the galley by talking about my own Small Pony with Wings all you have to do is find the post where I talked about her and reply there with your name and email address (I’ll give you a hint, I talked about my imaginary pony friend during the Writing Meme I did last April). On Sunday I’ll announce the winner!
EDIT: Second hint: start at the beginning of April 2010 (there is an archives drop down menu in the sidebar) and work your way back. The post you are looking for is early in the month!