The Girl Who Soared Over Fairyland and Cut the Moon in Two by Catherynne M Valente: A Review

The Girl Who Soared Over Fairyland and Cut the Moon in Two by Catherynne M Valente: A ReviewThe Girl Who Soared Over Fairyland and Cut the Moon in Two by Catherynne M. Valente
Series: Fairyland #3
on January 16th 2014
Pages: 256
Format: Paperback

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“One of the most extraordinary works of fantasy, for adults or children, published so far this century.”—Time magazine, on the Fairyland seriesSeptember misses Fairyland and her friends Ell, the Wyverary, and the boy Saturday. She longs to leave the routines of home and embark on a new adventure. Little does she know that this time, she will be spirited away to the moon, reunited with her friends, and find herself faced with saving Fairyland from a moon-Yeti with great and mysterious powers. The Girl Who Soared Over Fairyland and Cut the Moon in Two is another rich, beautifully told, wisely humorous, and passionately layered book from New York Times–bestselling author Catherynne M. Valente.

Never before have I read a book which combined the utterly absurd with such playful prose. Catherynne M Valente has created a delightful novel with bizarre characters, intriguing lands and a heroine you can’t help but like.

The Girl Who Soared Over Fairyland and Cut the Moon in Two is the third book in the Fairyland series however it is possible to love this book without having prior knowledge of the setting or the characters.

Each chapter begins with an illustration and brief description of what to expect. Just a few lines, rather succinct, but written in such a way that left me wanting to see just how the chapter plays out.

September is growing up. Now fourteen, she is worried that she might be too old to get to Fairyland any more. Desperate to be taken away, September tries all she can to be responsible and ready for her Fairyland adventures. She works hard, picking up odd jobs, learns to drive, all in the hope that when Fairyland beckons – September will be ready!

But life rarely happens how we want it too. September is carried adrift by a rather mischievous Blue Wind and September’s third Fairyland adventure is not quite as she expected.

September is a fun character to read about. She’s fourteen but seems to have left her childhood behind in an attempt to be adult about her desire to go back to Fairyland. Working to support her adventures has left September friendless in her real life and she spends her days wishing away the present hoping that her time in Fairyland is near.

“No one ever told her that exulting and dancing and singing nonsense were childish things, but she felt sure that they were, somehow.”

Fairyland isn’t how she remembered it but along the way September meets some old friends, is reunited with those of old and has an adventure like no other in the process.

I enjoyed the plot but for me the highlight of this story is the characters. Winds with personality, a crocodile who is “generous by nature and miserly by nurture”, as well as a whole host of other quirky and insane people September meets on her adventure make this book a delight to read.

Beautifully written and containing a lot of charm and whimsy, this book was a pleasure to read. I’ve not read the previous two Fairyland novels but after reading this one, I can’t wait to go back to the start of the series and see how September’s adventures in Fairyland began.


Thanks to the publisher for providing me with a copy to review. 

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