Catherynne M. Valente: The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making

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Book The first two pages and I m in love It s going on the must buy list as well as the must give listThe Girl sets all fairy tale conventions on their heads while managing to retain the spirit and charm of the best In the tradition of the door in the hedge fantasy the trip through the closet into Fairyland is inventive and whimsical Valente perhaps pokes fun at times but always gently ou will either perish most painfully or be forced to sit through a very tedious tea service with several spinster hamadryads The heroine is a bit unconventional but not exactly drowning in misery she washed the same pink and The Gift of Shamanism yellow teacups and matching gravy boats every day slept on the same embroidered pillow and had a mother bending over a stubborn airplane engine in her work overalls her arm muscles bulging Right thereou know it won t be traditional but nor will it be grim modern with boys locked under staircases mothers with drug problems or orphaned children scavenging food Yet it still explores the core emotional issues of independence identity fear and love while acknowledging the place children come from is not all kindness and cookies One ought not to judge her All children are heartless They have not grown a heart Direct Use of the Sun’s Energy yet which is why they can climb tall trees and say shocking things and leap so very high that grown up hearts flutter in terror Hearts weigh uite a lot That is why it takes so long to grow oneSwooning continued as I read Valente tells beautiful word smithy tales A Wyvern named A Through L his father is the Library deserves the award for Best Fantasy Sidekick of the Year There s even a list of reasons why Thirdly being French in origin they have highly refined tastes and are unlikely to seek out unsavory things to eat such as knights gallbladders or maidens bones They much prefer a vat or two of truffles a flock of geese and a lake of wine and they will certainly share Of course since they are FrenchAfter finishing I was mentally working out my review as I swam and discovered I had trouble analyzing why I enjoyed this book so much I went home picked up the book again opened to a page and found myself saying oh I loved this part only to follow it with and this phrasing and exclamations of and look how she characterizes That s the kind of book it is somethingou remember loving and enjoying even when The Definition of Icing (Dallas Demons, you can t uite identify why and then whenou are immersed in it again it all becomes crystal clearLike a fantasy worldWhen Paris Kanonen--The Paris Guns (Wilhelmgeschutze) and Project Harp you are bornour courage is new and clean You are brave enough for anything crawling off of staircases saying Memoirs of Hecate County your first words without fearing that someone will thinkou are foolish putting strange things in Three Barnyard Tales your mouth But asou get older A Short History of Ireland, 1500-2000 your courage attracts gunk and crusty things and dirt and fear and knowing how bad things can get and what pain feels like By the timeou re half grown If an Elephant Went to School your courage barely moves at all it s so grunged up with livingCross posted at My favorite thing about this book is of course Wyverary A Through L What s a wyveraryou ask Well when a wyvern and a library love each other very very muchblush Morse Code for Radio Amateurs you know the spiel But do I sense some skepticism my WINNER BESTest BRILLIANTest most EXCELLENTest YA Novel in HistorYA I know I know that comes as a bit of a shocker what with Potter Percy and those Hunger Gamers running from all those Sparkly Emos and bumping into Bartimaeus hiding inside His Dark Materials waiting for some Giver of an Abhorsen to find their Wrinkle in Time to send them all back to Wonderland Not to mention that AMAZO Genesis I read earlier thisear sorry I couldn t work it in above However despite all of those mostly special literary achievements this story by Ms Valente and her amazing protagonist September has concentrated WUP win units per page than any other too The Ideal Muslim Society young to vote fiction I have ever read The writing humor plot narrative voice characters imagination and respect for the reader that this gem of a book shows is something rare and very very special As I look over my list of all time favorite books of any genre one element that seems to appear most often is unforgettable prose and a uniue voice From Mieville in Perdido Street Station to McCarthy in No Country for Old Men to Winslow in Savages and to Gaiman in American Gods these writers get my pulse up and running and make my brain swell with jealousy and drip envy for the unworldly skills of these master wordsmithsWell folks Ms Valante will be buying the next round at the We Write so Amazingly Well That We Make You Feel Stupid and Inadeuate pub session The writing in this story is exuisite that it s painful It is descriptive and brilliantet humorous and whimsical It is just flawless in what it tries to donamely entertain enlighten and bring a sense of wonder and joy Those of Linux Networking Cookbook you that have read previously read Valente s In the Night Garden knows that she can pen prose like nobody s business and tell a complexet readable story with nuance and care Here she has taken that gift brought it to the YA format and created a new standard in excellence that I hope many try to follow Let me take a uick babble gush break and give ou a thumbnail of the plot A oung girl in Nebraska gets taken by the Green Wind and his companion the Leopard of Little Breezes to Fairyland for. Much older than September Only September can retrieve a talisman the Maruess wants from the enchanted woods and if she doesn't then the Maruess will make life impossible for the inhabitants of Fairyland September is already making new friends including a book loving Wyvern and a mysterious boy named Saturday With exuisite illustrations by acclaimed artist Ana Juan Fairyland li.

An unforgettable adventure Along the way she ends up meeting fantastical people creatures and places than FRIENDLY ENEMIES you could shake a magic stick at without having said stick turn around look atou and tell Amok you to knock it off Okay that s enough of the plot asou will be able to explore that creamy nuggety goodness all on And a Bottle of Rum your own Let s get back to the writing Here is a scene from the beginning of the book How does one get to Fairyland After a while we shall certainly pass India and Japan and California and simply come round to my house again The Green Wind chuckled I suppose that would be true if the earth were round I m reasonably sure it is You re going to have to stop that sort of backward old fashioned thinkingou know Conservatism is not an attractive trait Fairyland is a very Scientifick place We subscribe to all the best journals The Leopard of Little Breezes gave a light roar Several small clouds skipped huffily out of their path The earth my dear is roughly trapezoidal vaguely rhomboid a bit of a tessaract and altogether grumpy when its fur is stroked the wrong way In short it is a puzzle my autumnal acuisition C monjust say AhhhhhhIn addition to the story itself Ms Valente does something I really love to see in stories like this that have OMG so much is happening every second that it is hard to keep track of where we are going plots She gives the reader a map of what s coming without spoiling any of the story For example here is the heading for the second chapter in the book CHAPTER IITHE CLOSET BETWEEN WORLDS In which September Passes Between Worlds asks Four uestions and Receives Twelve Answers and Is Inspected by a Customs Officer Thus we are given hints as to what to look for but no way of knowing what it means until it happens and at which point we smile say wow wow wubsy and bask in the warm and fuzzy glow of the awesomeness Oh and a uick word on the ART The art is terrific and is a perfect compliment to the story For example Just another aspect of this incredible read Before I wrap this up I want to pay one final compliment to Ms Valente and also to other writers who show great respect for their readers While this is a story that I think YAs will love I believe that it is the adults especially those of us that love lush language and witty words that will enjoy this the most This is because Ms Valente doesn t dumb down her story AT ALL This is a YA book written as much for adults as for YAs kind of like the movie Shrek with all the little adult in jokes The story has a way of making Crochet you feel like aounger version of Playhouse yourself asou read it The story is sometimes dark but always beautiful There is adventure pain bravery lessons about life and growing up magic hardship sadness mysteries laughter amazing characters and OH THE WRITING Buy this bookread the booklove the bookre read this book 60 Stars HIGHEST POSSIBLE RECOMMENDATIONPS I listened to the audio version read by the author and she was absolutely amazingI mean amazing If ou have a chance to experience itDO I walked into the bookstore in a bit of a mood Wait that s my Midwestern nature talking We tend to understate The truth is I walked into the bookstore furious at the world I can t remember why I am prone to dark moods and when I m in the middle of one I tend to rumble through the world like an angry old testament god I went directly to the Sci Fi Fantasy section That s where I live for the most part That s where I go when the world gets to be too much for me I looked at the titles I d read about a uarter of them I read a lot But nothing looked particularly good Nothing does when I m in one of my moods A friendly bookseller walked over Can I help ou find anything she asked I want to read something good I said I m tired of gritty depressing shit I want a fun light book that isn t going to leave me wanting to put a gun in my mouth I m not hyperbolizing That s what I actually said It wasn t a nice thing to say but I can be unpleasantly brusk at times The bookseller didn t bat and eye She pointed out a couple books then asked how I felt about YA I ll read anything if it s good I said She pointed out this book I d heard of it before appreciated its awesome title I like faerie stories Most importantly I ve read Cat Valente s work before and I know she has a marvelous grip on the language Five pages into this book I thought Why didn t I read this Desire and Deceive years ago Why haven t I heard about this book before I flipped to the back cover and saw blurbs from Neil Gaiman and Peter S Beagle Oh I thought Probably because I m an idiot who lives under a rock Ten pages in I was irritated Fifteen pages in I was jealous Twenty pages in I was in love So A review This book is beautiful The language is lovely without being pretentious The story is careful and playful and smart This book made me tear up in places Not because it is particularly sad But because sometimes when a story is true and sweet and perfectly shaped it puts its hand around my heart This book is everything I love about Victorian faerie tales without all the tedious bullshit This is the best book I ve read allear And I read a lot of books I look forward to reading this book to my little boy And that ultimately is the best thing I can say about a book So eah Read it Read it ten times. Ves up to the sensation it created when the author first posted it online For readers of all ages who love the charm of Alice in Wonderland and the soul of The Golden Compass here is a reading experience unto itself unforgettable and so very beautiful The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making is a Publishers Weekly Best Children's Fiction title for 201.

Growing up i loved the Oz books the Baum ones at least i read all of them multiple times i think there are 14 or so and have enjoyed rereading them here and there as an adult i love how the fancifulness and freuent absurdity of Baum s creations are anchored down by prosaic reality i love their no nonsense child heroines and occasional heroes precocious but never precious cute but never cutesy poo i love the transparency of Baum s prose the layering of meaning and metaphor the use of genuine tragedy the light touch the wisdom of it all so it is a happy thing and one of the highest compliments that i can imagine giving when i say that reading Girl Who Circumnavigated brought me right back to that enchanting feeling of reading a classic Oz bookValente is a marvel with language i knew she could write like a mad poet after reading the amazing In the Night Garden less expected was her ability to smooth down and simplify her lush style so that it is perfectly tailored for a children s novel it loses no lustre in the transition reading Valente s prose reminds me of looking through my window at a light rain falling on an otherwise bright day the sun and water making a painting of the world images seen through the droplets of rain rolling down glass lovelythe character of The Girl Who Circumnavigates is instantly familiar from any number of Oz books her sensible and at times irritable nature the depth of her feelings her forthright way of navigating the places through which she wanders she is a classic type but never a tiresome one her attachment to her new friends is adorable but never corny or mawkish i love the brave moments when she considers returning home but almost instantaneously rejects that cowardly path and when she finally builds that Ship of Her Own Making my gosh that was wonderful much internal cheering ensuedValente makes the adventure a pleasure from beginning to end her use of irony is constant and sweetly good hud never heavy handed suitable for kids but thoroughly adult as well eually sophisticated is her use of symbol and metaphor her smooth incorporation of various mythologies and mythological creatures and especially her entirely original conception of the novel s arch villain so appalling so tragic so understandable poor childand any children s fantasy that features the parallel saga of a brave loyal Key a strikingly sinister Shadow of a Little Girl about to run off on its own strange journey a helpful industrious Smoking Jacket two Witches married to an elegant little male Witch Wair Wolf and most of all a genuinely touching loveable Wyvern well i am that novel s true friend This is a portal fantasy in the The Wonderful Wizard of OzThe Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe tradition where a oung girl goes to a magical land and tries to Right What s Wrong Twelve Household Gods year old September bored with her life and washing pink andellow teacups and dealing with mostly absent parents gets talked into a trip to Fairyland by the Green Wind who settles her into the saddle of his flying leopard and whisks her away to new adventures Because like most children September is or less Heartless she doesn t tell her mother good bye or leave her a note She finds some delightful and magical friends and is reluctantly pulled into a uest by the cruel ruler of Fairyland the Maruess And Se I am generally one for simple blunt truth My brain doesn t like to decipher complex and ornate metaphors and I hate reading through layer upon layer of language I m usually just waiting for the author to get to the point But then something like this comes along and just makes me uestion everything that I thought I knew about myself The writing here is highly imaginative and odd and funny and a bit absurd It s descriptive and clever and maybe occasionally just a bit fussy But all this shine and glimmer and show has some real substance underneath it And honestlyI liked the shine and glimmer most of the time There isn t one page of this book that I couldn t pull a gorgeous uote from Ms Valente certainly does get to the point and the point is real honest emotion and a gorgeous coming of age storySeptember is a twelve Maos Little Red Book year old girl who finds her life dull and tedious and so when the Green Wind flows in one day with a flying Leopard to take her off to Fairyland she goes without a thought She doesn t even spare a goodbye for her parents who are both rather missing in her life anyway In Fairyland she initially gets swept up in novelty and adventure as she meets glorious new friends and takes on a random uest But she soon realizes that all is not well the Maruesse reigns imposing strict taxes restrictions and bureaucracy on every citizen The similarities to Alice in Wonderland are evident bu This book just wasn t for me The writing style is so different so whimsical so fancy that I can tell the author had a lot of fun stretching her v This 5 review has been moved to Shelf InflictedIt s superb jaw dropping writing I ll be very surprised if this isn t a lot of people s favorite childhood read in theear 2040 Which I hope to be around to see Rating 35 starsThis was so imaginative and whimsical it is certainly a fun read with wonderful characters I found it to lag a little in the middle so it a slower read despite the length of the. Twelve ear old September lives in Omaha and used to have an ordinary life until her father went to war and her mother went to work One day September is met at her kitchen window by a Green Wind taking the form of a gentleman in a green jacket who invites her on an adventure implying that her help is needed in Fairyland The new Maruess is unpredictable and fickle and also not.

Catherynne M Valente was born on Cinco de Mayo 1979 in Seattle WA but grew up in in the wheatgrass paradise of Northern California She graduated from high school at age 15 going on to UC San Diego and Edinburgh University receiving her BA in Classics with an emphasis in Ancient Greek Linguistics She then drifted away from her MA program and into a long residence in the concrete and cam