A fairy tale for all ages.
Publication year: 2011
Publication year of the Finnish translation: 2013
Translator: Sarianna Silvonen
Illustrator: Ana Juan
Page count: 339
Publisher of the Finnish translation: Gummerus
September is a 12-year-old girl and she lives in Omaha with her mother who is an engineer. Her fa-ther is away because he’s a soldier. One day, Green Wind invites September to Fairyland and she accepts. She rides Green Wind’s leopard to Fairyland where she will find new friends but also strange adventures.
This is a delightful, highly imaginative, and charming tale but it could be at times rather scary for young readers. Still, I think it’s well worth a read. It has a narrator who remains nameless but who is eager to please the reader.
I really enjoyed the characters, especially the wyvern “A through L” who thinks his father is a li-brary. He is named after the encyclopedia entries he read and knows by heart.
“Stories have a way of changing faces. They are unruly things, undisciplined, given to delinquency and the throwing of erasers. This is why we must close them up into thick, solid books, so they cannot get out and cause trouble.”
“When you are born,” the golem said softly, “your courage is new and clean. You are brave enough for anything: crawling off of staircases, saying your first words without fearing that someone will think you are foolish, putting strange things in your mouth. But as you get older, 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 time you’re half-grown, your courage barely moves at all, it’s so grunged up with living. So every once in awhile, you have to scrub it up and get the works going, or else you’ll never be brave again.”
“Shoes are funny beasts. You think they’re just clothes, but really, they’re alive. They want things. Fancy ones with gems want to go to balls, big boots want to go to work, slippers want to dance. Or sleep. Shoes make the path you’re on. Change your shoes, change your path.”
“When little ones say they want to go home, they almost never mean it. They mean they are tired of this particular game and would like to start another.”
“It is true that novelists are shameless and obey no decent law, and they are not to be trusted on any account, but some Mysteries even they must honor.”