What-the-dickens

Posted: July 29, 2013 in Children's, Reviews
Tags: , ,

dickens

Author: Gregory Maguire

Hardback, 295 pages

Published in 2007 by Candlewick Press

Reader Category:  Younger

AR Book Level: 5.0

From the Publisher: On the darkest night, amidst a terrifying storm, Dinah’s parents go missing.  While anxious Dinah and her brother and sister worry and huddle for warmth, their cousin Gage tells them an unlikely story – about tooth fairies, known as skibbereen, who are living in warring colonies right in the neighborhood.  According to Gage, the skibbereen put those teeth to good use.  And Gage has met them.  Dinah is skeptical, but as the story unfolds and the storm rages on, she begins to believe.

My Review:  This is the first book that I have read from Gregory Maguire and I have to say that I was not disappointed. The story goes back-and-forth between the What-the-Dickens and Dinah, but is easy to follow.

Dinah and her brother and sister are home-schooled and sheltered and the very thought of using your imagination to tell stories is foreign to them.  When Gage begins weaving his fantastical tale of the skibbereen, Dinah is completely hooked.  She hangs on his every word and values the story more than sleep.

I have to admit that the story really came alive when What-the Dickens met Pepper, an experienced tooth fairy who makes him realize that he has no idea how someone of his kind should behave.  Pepper is leery of What-the-Dickens at first and thinks that he must be a spy from a rival colony, but eventually accepts him as a simple, not-so-bright skibbereen that needs help navigating his new world.

This book is full of humor and heart.  It is a great read for the entire family and would be a fantastic book read aloud.  I highly recommend it to all ages.

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