Thursday, March 10, 2011

Small Persons with Wings

Small Persons with Wings
by Ellen Booraem

When she was just five, Mellie Turpin lost her small person with wings (NEVER call them fairies).  Well, she didn't really lose him, she just accidentally angered him so much that he left her.  She didn't know that he was a secret.  She didn't know she wasn't supposed to tell.  And she certainly didn't know that she wasn't supposed to offer to bring him to school for show-and-tell like one might bring a pet.
Now he's gone.

The other kids think she lied.  The school psychologist thinks she needs help.  The bullies think she's easy prey.  And she's made a real enemy in one girl who now insists on tormenting her and calling her "Fairy Fat".

Soon, Mellie comes to realize that her small person with wings wasn't real and she throws herself into logic and science.  Anything having to do with creativity and imagination is just plain dangerous in her mind.

Now it's the end of seventh grade and word comes that her grandfather has died.

Mellie couldn't be happier.

Her grandfather was an angry drunk who used to insult her and her family and then throw liquor bottles at them, so she doesn't really miss him.  She also won't miss the relentless name-calling and teasing because now she gets to move with her parents to take over her grandfather's inn and start a new life.

But there's a catch...

It turns out that her grandfather's house is the home of another small person with wings, as well as a family heirloom and history that Mellie would never have believed if she hadn't seen proof with her own eyes.

Now someone, or something, wants the magic for him/her/itself and Mellie may be the only one to protect it.

Final thoughts:  Cute, fun read with a few interesting ideas.  I enjoyed the small persons with wings when they interacted one on one with Mellie.  It's just a little over-complicated with the three different kinds of magic and the family history.  Booraem seemed to have gotten a little involved in her own cleverness at times, so some things that may have been witty or funny, just come off as overdone.  Mellie is also hard to classify.  She's supposed to be thirteen, but often the story seems like it's told from an 8 year old instead of a soon-to-be 8th grader.  Also a few of the things like the grandfather never ever being nice to her (and even regularly calling her fat) and the last couple of pages  just didn't sit right.  I liked the overall plot, but the details just needed work.

Rating: 3/5


Sara said...

Sounds like a good idea for a book that didn't quite work.

Susan (Reading World) said...

Interesting premise. Thanks for your review!


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