Engrossed in her book on fairies, a little girl with a pixie haircut doesn’t notice the actual fairies flying all around her, but her loyal bulldog companion is more observant. With the help of Sue Fliess’ delightful rhyming text, young readers can learn right along with the little girl all the tricks and tips to befriending fairies. It’s not as simple as lifting rocks or looking in hollow logs to find them. Fairies need a home, so the little girl builds one out of twigs and blooms and begins to decorate it: “Thistle fluff for fairy’s bed,/ Willow fuzz to rest her head.” Once the house is complete, with empty nutshells for swings, the little girl entices the fairies with a flower-petal stew. And once the fairies accept the girl’s open hands, they return their friendship by keeping her safe and teaching her how to fly.
It’s not just the storyline that’s reminiscent of a Disney movie. Disney animator Claire Keane offers a decidedly retro Disney flare to her charming, loosely drawn illustrations, rendered in watercolors and pastels. Daytime scenes feature earthy tones befitting the outdoors, while enchanting purple evenings allow twinkling fairy light to shimmer. For anyone who’s ever created a backyard fairy garden or placed a fairy door at the base of an old tree, hoping fairies would come and stay, this book will tug at your heart. For young readers first learning about the secret lives of fairies, this book will open up a world of imagination.