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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
Bluebell is a wish fairy. Her job is to grant wishes to human children. She’s new at the job, and things aren’t going so well. Somehow things keep going wrong, like granting a little boy his wish for a dragon, which, when it appeared in the little boy’s bedroom, roared and spouted fire, scaring the little boy who really only wanted a pet lizard. Then she accidentally turns the Head Wish gnome purple, and she bumps into a honeybee, knocking over a pot full of honey. And the list goes on. Can Bluebell do anything right on her first day as a wish fairy?
P.J. Reed’s middle-grade novel, Bluebell: The Fairies of Therwen Wood, is a sweet fantasy full of fairies and magic and wishes that come true. The plot follows Bluebell’s escapades as she struggles to fit in, do a good job as a wish fairy, and her frustration when nothing seems to be going right. Then she interacts with a human girl, Maya, who struggles with some of Bluebell’s same issues: bullying and harassment. The language is simple to help young readers, and the story is accompanied by black-and-white drawings to move the plot forward. The dialogue is engaging, and the reader will share a chuckle or two, as well as a few tears of frustration, as Bluebell stumbles her way toward success. Young readers will feel connected to Bluebell’s plight, and they’ll be cheering her on as she struggles against one problem after another but never gives up. Her perseverance is a powerful tool for all to learn.