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Fairy Dust and the Quest for the Egg

by Gail Carson Levine
208 pages, Fantasy
Reviewed by Aslan's Lamb

Although there's some violence, the book is well-written, interesting and has very good values.

Plot

All the fairies are excited because a new fairy is about to arrive in Neverland. But when the fairy (named Prilla) arrives, it turns out that unlike all of the fairies before her, she does not know her talent. When a terrible earthquake destroys Mother Dove's egg, Prilla goes on a quest with two other fairies in order to restore Mother Dove's egg and save Neverland, finding her talent in the process.

Morality

Virtues such as kindness and courage are praised. The better characters apologize when they have behaved badly ("I'd fly backwards if I could"). Some fairies are snobbish or selfish but Mother Dove clearly disapproves of such behavior. Mother Dove herself is a perfect example of goodness and unconditional love.

Spiritual Content

Fairy-tale magic.

Violence

For a children's book about fairies, quite a bit. Fairies and other creatures are injured in a hurricane. Mother Dove is injured in the hurricane and again later in the story. Levine isn't afraid to mention blood, pain, and broken body parts. Fairies pluck another bird because they need his feathers and feel that they have no choice. Prilla bites an evil character. Tinker Bell pinches a wild animal in order to defend Mother Dove. A fairy feels pain that is caused by another creature's magic.

A fairy has her wings cut off but feels no pain. In his sleep, Captain Hook recites the names of men he had killed.

Drug and Alcohol Content

Captain Hook smokes a pipe.

Sexual Content

Terrence has a crush on Tinker Bell but that's as far as it goes. Tinker Bell tells Mother Dove about how she and Peter Pan used to spend all their time together until he met Wendy and left Tink with a broken heart.

Crude or Profane Language or Content

None.

Conclusion

Placing her fairies in the beautiful setting of Peter Pan, Levine writes an engaging and clever story. Prilla is an instantly likable character and her desire to belong will resonate with every reader. The values are excellent and nearly every main character learns something by the end (Vidia is one exception). As aforementioned, however, there is some violence, so parents should handle that with care. Otherwise, a very good book for children.

Fun Score: 5
Values Score: 4.5
Written for Age: 8-10

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