The Girl Who Fell Beneath Fairyland and Led the Revels There
by Catherynne M. Valente Series: Fairyland #2 Published by Feiwel & Friends
on October 2nd 2012 Pages:
September returns to Fairyland to reunite with A-Through-L, Saturday, and Gleam, and to confront her shadow-self, who has become the queen of Fairyland-Below, the upside-down world beneath the Fairyland of the first novel, filled with creatures of water and shadow, tales of ancient Fairyland before the human world was born, and not a few hungry buffins, blind birds of ice and moonlight. The yearly revels of Fairyland-Below climax in a mysterious rite September must avert or else lose her shadow forever.
I absolutely love the cadence of Valente's writing and fell in love with Fairyland in the first book. It was a no-brainer to read a sequel about magical Fairyland. The first thing I love about this book is the marvelous chapter headings that so remind me of olden tales. The pictures within the novel are superb and magical, showing a real image into what the creatures September meets really look like. I just love how September has changed since the last book and how the narrator describes the difference between a child and a young woman.
The thrilling adventures in this novel have just the right amount of magic to them, they are darker but not dark enough to merit fear from the reader. I must say I love the use of libraries throughout these books, making them more magical of places than they already are. Beyond that, the writing is so beautiful and cunning in word-use that I found myself slowing down for once and reading carefully. I admit to being a bit of a speed-reader, always cutting out parts that bore me. Valente does a marvelous job of describing setting without boring the reader, instead she uses it to entice them.
Final Verdict: A solid sequel and a beautifully written and drawn novel that I cannot help but compare to Alice in Wonderland and stories of the like.