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The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making

The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making


The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making

ratings:
4/5 (162 ratings)
Length:
7 hours
Released:
May 10, 2011
ISBN:
9781441877642
Format:
Audiobook

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Also available as ebookEbook

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Description

"This is a kind of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by way of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland-it's the sort of book one doesn't want to end." -Publisher's Weekly, starred review

September is a girl who longs for adventure. When she is invited to Fairyland by a Green Wind and a Leopard, well, of course she accepts. (Mightn't you?) But Fairyland is in turmoil, and it will take one twelve-year-old girl, a book-loving dragon, and a strange and almost human boy named Saturday to vanquish an evil Marquess and restore order.

Released:
May 10, 2011
ISBN:
9781441877642
Format:
Audiobook

Also available as...

Also available as ebookEbook

About the author

Catherynne M. Valente is an acclaimed, New York Times bestselling creator of over forty works of fantasy and science fiction, including the Fairyland novels and The Glass Town Game. She has been nominated for the Nebula and World Fantasy awards, and has won the Otherwise (formerly Tiptree), Hugo, and Andre Norton award. She lives on a small island off the coast of Maine with her partner, young son, and a shockingly large cat with most excellent tufts.



Reviews

What people think about The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making

4.2
162 ratings / 141 Reviews
What did you think?
Rating: 0 out of 5 stars

Reader reviews

  • (3/5)
    I should have liked this book. I wanted to like this book. But the tone seemed overblown to me, the narrator irritatingly uninformative. I liked the main character's bouts of doubt and hardship (things are awful, and she cries like a normal person), and the decorative details of gender parity (her mother's an engineer, the bicycle cowboy is a woman). But the story didn't pick me up and lift me into fairyland.
  • (4/5)
    The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making by Catherynne M. Valente, illustrated by Ana Juan There was so much to love here!

    The narrative style is just perfect. It was done similar to the way the Great Gatsby is narrated except that the tone was much more upbeat and playful. The tone was more like Flynn Ryder telling his kids the story about how he met Rapunzel in Tangled.
    The beginning is set during WWII and that's central to September's outlook on life, and some other aspects of her character.
    The story felt like the first time I saw Alice in Wonderland. Everything was strange and wonderful and made sense in it's own way. It was also full of little bits of wisdom the way that Alice in Wonderland is. I have to read the original one day...
    Heartlessness and growing a heart is dealt with in an interesting way here.
    She says yes to adventure, she doesn't just happen upon it.

    I'm probably going to read this to (or with) my son one day when he's into chapter books. I personally believe in saying yes to adventure and wanting to find obstacles to overcome, rather than waiting for things to happen to you.
  • (5/5)
    A great book, very much in the spirit of much of the classic fantasy that has come before it. The plot is intentionally reminiscent of many different traditional and modern fantasy stories, a classic take on the hero's quest that does a good job of knowing when and how to twist the elements and with more than enough cleverness to amuse and entice.The personal themes brought up in the book deal with the importance of friendship but also the necessity of dealing with some things on your own. Societally the book deals with the question of order vs freedom and what should the balance within society be when some people want more freedom and some people want more order.
  • (5/5)
    A delightful and whimsical tale!
  • (5/5)
    Oh my goodness. I love this book so much I'm going to have to do a youtube review about it too. I think what I loved most about the book was that the writing style and theme of the book read like a cross between two of my favorite books, The Chronicles of Narnia and Alice in Wonderland. In fact, the author (who writes directly to the reader at times -- just like C.S Lewis did!) references both books, in an off-hand sort of manner. It's easy to miss the reference, if you don't pay close attention. Many times, I caught myself reading quickly (cause it's a good book), and a character would say something, and I'd have to stop myself, go back and read it again, to be sure that I just read a reference to one of my favorite books! The characters are whimsical, and seem to make no sense at all, but they represent very clear and real ideas that we face each day of our lives. I like books that can present seemingly nonsensical characters and dialog, so that, the average reader might roll their eyes, but a reader who thrives on symbolism and metaphors will jump for joy when they discover the meaning behind the characters, dialog, setting and plot-line.
  • (5/5)
    Superbly enjoyable and wonderfully whimsical fairy tales for adults. Written in a adult prose of long winded sentences it carefully captures the childlike delight of fairyland whilst making several important points in the process. The plot - well it's much the same as it ever is in a Fairytale. Child (a girl named September) gains access to Fairyland, has to decide who to trust, goes on a Quest to retrieve an item, and finds out what is important to them. There's an evil Queen who's disposed Fairy;ands prior wonderful one. She's embarked on making Fairyland Nice for Human Children, and so most of the traditional fairies have had their powers hampered in some way. Only leopards are allowed to fly, all dragons, wyverns and fairies have their wings chained shut. This is just one example of the darker themes that run through the story. I wouldn't really class this as a book for children. It's also full of more nuanced words like Circumnavigate, that are probably a challenge for younger readers. There is however a lot here to delight adults so thats OK. Some of the traditional concepts of Fairyland have been twisted, such as the Various Means a child may enter, and some, such as not eating the food, and the glamour of their magic, have been kept intact. It all works very well, and is sufficiently explained (at least by the end). Perhaps my highest praise goes to the continuity which is meticulously maintained throughout - no easy feat in such a story.The style is pseudo Victorian, with subtitled chapters and an active narrator. I dislike both really, but they work well enough here. The Narrator's voice is kept to a minimum, not even appearing once in every chapter, just enough to add a little bit of information that our heroine September is unaware of. Her name is probably the most annoying thing about the whole book. There is no particular reason why an ordinary american girl should be called September. Initially there is some indication that it might not be her 'True' name - a prized concept in Fairy - but his never turns out to be case, so she is stuck with September. Meanwhile short asides declaim upon the freedom of choice (ala Thomas Covenant but in far shorter and happier manner); the importance of shoes; the wisdom of baths; the innocence and commensurate insensibility of children; and many other themes. All of which carry that light hearted whimsical tone that you'd expect from Alice in Wonderland, but when you stop and think about it are more profound than Alice's drug dreams. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and indeed laughed aloud at several points, which is good for a fairy Tale. I recommend it to any adult who is still in touch with their inner child.There is apparently a sequel - space was just about left for one. And I shall track it down without fear of failure.