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THE FAIRY CHRONICLES: CINNABAR AND THE ISLAND OF SHADOWS

Author: J. H. Sweet

Illustrator: Holly Sierra

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Publisher: Jabberwocky, an Imprint of Sourcebooks,

Material: paperback

Summary: Cinnabar and her fairy mentor Madam Finch were on their way to a Fairy Circle. Cinnabar always enjoyed these events, because she got to catch up with her friends and meet new fairy friends. This Fairy Circle seemed a little different. Not only was Brownie Christopher here, but Madam Toad was having a serious conversation with Trace, an elf. After she convened the meeting, Madam Toad explained that there were seven infants who had not yet received their shadows. Madam Toad needed the help of a Fairy team to visit the Island of Shadows, discover the problem, and fix it. The travel was dangerous, and as the fairies found out, the shadows weren't missing. They were stolen! The fairies must solve this problem under the cover of night. Will they have enough time and enough magic? This part of a lightly illustrated chapter book adventure series for girls 7 and up offer stories of teamwork and a positive message.

Type of Reading: bedtime story, independent reading, illustrated chapter, short chapter, read aloud book

Recommended Age: read together: 7 to 10; read yourself: 8 and up

Interest Level: 7 to 9

Reading Level: 2.9

Age of Child: Review pending.

Young Reader Reaction: Review pending.

Adult Reader Reaction: I have always enjoyed these stories, as they encourage imagination, offer lessons in teamwork, and promote discovering your talent. There are some enchanting elements of the story: shadows are part of our individuality, and we need contrasts in our lives. It just took too long to get into the story. After introducing Cinnabar, the author stepped away from the story and used nearly 6 pages to talk about fairy elements. Frankly, two or three examples of wands is plenty. A full page is too much.

Pros: Newly independent readers will enjoy this adventure story where girls become fairies and use their talents to help solve problems.

Cons: This is the seventh title in this series, and while I understand that this may be the first book for some readers, the background details about fairy traits tires faithful ones. We would encourage the author to consider a mini-section that resembles the fairy handbook, or inset cards that have the traits, much like the biographies for the characters.

Borrow or Buy: Borrow. This is a series for developing and newly independent readers.

If You Liked This Book, Try: THE FORGOTTEN SECRET (Grim Hill Series, Book 3)   THE FAIRY CHRONICLES: MARIGOLD AND THE FEATHER OF HOPE, THE JOURNEY BEGINS   TOO MANY FAIRIES: A CELTIC TALE

Notes: The publisher donated a copy of this book knowing that we would consider it for review and provide an independent, unbiased profile. This book will be given to a nonprofit to help readers in need.

Literary Categories: Fiction - fantasy, adventure, easy reader series

Date(s) Reviewed: May 2007

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