I am very happy to review any novel that fits in with the theme of this blog: novels aimed at 9-14 year olds, preferably with a fantasy/ speculative world setting. However, I will make clear in the review that I was sent the book by the publisher and I will write my honest opinion. Please feel free to contact me via Twitter or Facebook, or fantasticreads at gmail dot com.
Monday, 16 April 2012
An Illustrated Year 4: Fragoline and the Midnight Dream by Clemency Pearce and Rebecca Elliot
I returned from the wonderful Federation of Children's Book Groups yesterday, full of happiness, inspiration and fabulous books! One of the most inspiring seminars I attended was with a panel including Rebecca Elliot on representations of disability in children's books. I will return to this subject at a later date; however, I fell in love with Rebecca's illustrations, and came across this book, illustrated by her and written by Clemency Pearce.
Fragoline and the Midnight Dream is the story of a little girl who is "bright and clean... pure as milk and good as gold" until midnight strikes, when she puts on a black velvet cape, skipping, running and rolling outside while the moon looks down, telling her to go to bed. Fragoline responds:
"I'll do exactly as I please!
I'm Fragoline!" she said.
The text is rhythmical and rhyming, and apparently was initially written as a poem. It is definitely a book for sharing with a child rather than one for early readers; the vocabulary is occasionally challenging- it reminds me a lot of the wonderful Quentin Blake book Mr Magnolia in this respect. The pictures are beautiful; detailed and rich, and Fragoline's mischievous face is delightful. Clemency Pearce is a new writer to look out for, and I'll definitely be seeking out more of Rebecca Elliot's work.