Sunday, August 16, 2009

How to ditch your fairy.

Larbalestier, Justine How to ditch your fairy.
Bloomsbury see St. Martins 2008 307p 16.99 978-1-59990-301-9 ms/hs

The citizens of New Avalon possess fairies. Some are happy with their fairies; others are not. Charlie and Fiorenze are definitely NOT happy with their fairies. Their miseries become our entertainment! When something good or bad happens repeatedly to somebody, we say, "You're lucky!" or "You're so unlucky!" In How to Ditch Your Fairy, Justine Larbalestier has found the cause of both good and bad luck! It's a fairy. In this uniquely crafted novel, young teens at a sports' high school in a futuristic, nondescript city have a clothes-shopping fairy and a parking fairy, a fairy to keep them out of trouble and a fairy that makes them attractive to the opposite sex. Young readers will love the plot from beginning to end as they read about Charlie and Fiorenze and the development of their unlikely friendship. They NEED each other in order to ditch their unwanted fairies. Steffi, the dreamy suitor, offers himself to the girl who is in possession of the fairy that attracts members of the opposite sex, and the reader will pity him for his role as the helpless, fickle doos guy (meaning "cool"). After successfully performing the transfer, Charlie and Fiorenze realize that the other's fairy is as undesirable as the original. In a death-defying attempt to rid themselves forever of their fairies (that will have you laughing out loud), the girls slip and slide down a man-made mountain of ice, without a bobsled! The vocabulary is outlandishly clever, and the concept of a new type of high school where one focuses entirely on one's avocation is especially timely in light of the current crisis in education. If you keep an open mind, you will find yourself examining your own luck and the likelihood that a fairy is either watching over you or torturing your very existence! The "List of Known Fairies" ties real life with the fantasy life as it provides an explanation of the most common fairies. We all know people who are in possession of some of them. Finally, there is a glossary to help the reader with words like pulchritudinous, spoffs, doos, and fairy dung. Fairy dung doesn't need a glossary! M.Squaresky

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