Philipa Fisher and the Dream Maker’s Daughter by Liz Kessler seemed a little dull to me when I started reading it. But that might be because I haven’t read the first book. In any case, it seemed as if it would be the first book I’d borrowed for reviewing purposes that would get a post saying that I wasn’t going to review it because it wasn’t to my liking. Of course, I seemed to conveniently forget some other books that started out in a boring fashion, and got interesting just past the point where I stopped when I first picked them up. Silly me. This time though, I continued reading until I actually found the first pocket of interest.
It came in the form of the fairy Daisy, the fairy godsister of Philipa Fisher, who’s eccentric (rather crazy) parents do things that embarrass her in public. For example: calling her sausage (in her dad’s case). Daisy appeared to Philipa as a flower the first time they met. Her first appearance in this book was as a butterfly, she landed on the maps they had set out (they were trying to decide where to go for a vacation, which Philipa had won in a contest at school) and decided the place they would go. This wasn’t interesting to me. The fact that a fairy organization was planning something unknown (and the fact that fairy godmothers hardly ever see a “client” twice) was what sparked my interest.
They arrive at the town and rent a place, Philipa chooses a room in the attic, feeling it’s comfortable atmosphere, she wondered why in the world the previous owners had sold the house. She wished (if I remember correctly) to meet the owners. She had no idea that this wish would be granted. When her parents went with her to do some pottery at a shop, she met a girl called Robyn. Robyn was shy, and hardly talkative. Just when Philipa started getting to know her, her father, Martin, arrived, and started yelling at her in public to come home. Poor, poor Robyn. Philipa felt sorry for her. Annie, the store’s owner, was annoyed, but couldn’t stop Martin from taking Robyn home.
Things picked up from here, though they didn’t escalate into anything really tense, like the books I’m used to. If I actually stopped thinking “it’s going to happen now, something is going to spring out and poison one of them or something to make this more exciting”, I would realize that I liked the change. The sort of fiction I usually read gets tense for awhile at some point or other in the story. The part in this story where things got tense was when Martin caught Daisy and was going to cut off her wings (she was in butterfly form). Without their wings, fairies die. For some reason, this didn’t feel as tense as it might have in other stories. I believe that this does the author credit. There is a nice, gentle feel to the story, better for people who don’t enjoy battle filled stories, or action/adventure stories (like I do).
According to this story, most butterflies are fairies in disguise, delivering dreams. I will never look at a butterfly the same again. I recommend this story, because it is very good, and would be perfect for reading to a kid at bedtime if you chose to do so.
Even if this book seems boring compared to the stuff I like reading best, it is still good story telling. And it wasn’t until I finished the book that I knew that Mary Hoffman, the writer of the Stravaganza books, encouraged it’s writing. I was surprised, but after finishing it, knew why she’d done it. It’s a good story, and was meant to be read by people other than close friends or relatives. It deserves to be on book store and library shelves. Now before I start tearing up, I’d better stop all this praising, or I might start having one review I’ve got to write bleed into this one, with references that have nothing to do with the story in here. I know that this review isn’t as filled with spoilers as some of my other ones, I don’t know why it isn’t, but that’s just how this one came out. I hope you enjoyed it, and I hope it convinced you to at least check the book out. 🙂 Happy reading.