Wednesday, 19 December 2018

A Pixie's Promise by Dianna Sanchez (Children's, 9 years +, 10E/10E)

Petunia is so cute!
 October 2018, Dreaming Robot Press, 230 pages, Paperback and Ebook, Review copy 

Summary from Dreaming Robot Press
She gets lost at home among her bazillion brothers, sisters, and cousins. Even her own parents don’t remember her name! And no one ever takes a pixie seriously.

When Petunia’s best friend, Millie, offers a vacation at her house, Petunia jumps at the chance. Cooking for Millie’s witch of a mother and babysitting a tree should be easy, right? But when an epidemic of spickle pox hits the Enchanted Forest, and Millie’s mother comes down with a mysterious illness, Petunia must pitch in to brew cures as quickly as she can, even if that means using up all her pixie dust.

And when the cure doesn’t work as well as it should, it’s up to Petunia to figure out how to change the formula to save the Enchanted Forest, while living up to all the promises she’s made.

Nayu's thoughts 
This is what I call a traditional story: it is a happy world that the pixies and other creatures live in, it isn't super dark, something I've seen in a fair few similar tales, is full of humour, mild peril, and loads of imagination. It's the kind of world I want to live in! The pixies and other creatures use predominantly natural objects as furniture and tools in their lives, with a bit of magic too.

Right from the start I felt sorry for Petunia because of how overlooked she is by her own family. I can't quite wrap my head around why her parents have so many children if they don't bother to recognise them as individuals. Petunia's frustrations made Millie's offer seem absolutely amazing. She doesn't have a clue how hard a task master Millie's mother is, how she is never satisfied and forces Millie to make a Pixie Promise, a most sacred vow that has dire consequences if it is broken. Millie does know what she's agreeing to, mostly, although not so much how busy she is keeping up with Millie's mother's demands. 

What I like about this book is that although it is 2nd in a series, I didn't feel that I'd missed out by not reading book 1. All the characters are explained clearly, I didn't feel like I was missing insider jokes, and I didn't want the book to end. It felt like every single sentence was magical in it's own way, having me be in awe of Petunia's world. I wanted to be her so badly! She has so much fun creating magic when she is allowed to do so, her joy bounced off the page. I did guess a major plot twist fairly early on, but what happens at the end was quite a surprise, so too was how intricate the truth surrounding the illness's origins was. It wove in themes of prejudice and bullying into magic and friendship. I sincerely hope there are more adventures in store for Petunia! 

Find out more on Dianna's website

Suggested read
Another tale where magic and the like fits seamlessly in the world is Giselda the Witch by J S Rumble (Children's, 9 years +, 10E/10E)

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