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meganbaxter

meganbaxter

I'm a grad student, an avid reader, a huge nerd, fervent roleplayer, wife, cat lover, tea snob, and obsessive keeper of lists.
The Girl Who Soared Over Fairyland and Cut the Moon in Two - Catherynne M. Valente, Ana Juan

I love these books. I've said it before, and if there are more to come, I'll damn well say it again. I love these books. These are books I'd be so happy to read to children, and I would barely be able to suppress my glee to see what stories they'd come up with themselves, prompted by these inventive and whimsical tales. September, every time she goes to Fairyland, steals my heart.

That said, I had some odd moments with this one that I don't recall from the previous two. It might be entirely me, I may have been more distracted this time, for whatever reason, but there were these little moments of dissonance, where I'd completely lost track of what was going on, and couldn't for a few seconds, figure out why the characters were doing what they were doing. I'd go back a few pages, and carefully reading, figure it out, but even then, the links occasionally seemed slight, and the information buried.

It's a minor quibble, really, beside how lovely these books are, and for the most part, I loved The Girl Who Soared to pieces, but it did keep happening.

September is worried, because no wind has come for her this year. She's afraid she's grown up too much, and Fairyland will be forever beyond her reach. So when she finally gets to Fairyland and is immediately sent on a side mission to the moon, there's a sense of desperation, of trying to fit all the rest of her experiences in before she leaves them behind.

On the moon, she is reunited with A-through-L, the Wyverary, and Saturday, the Marid, but even these relationships are more complicated. The Wyverary is shrinking, and she has seen enough of the future to be wary of the Marid - not because she doesn't love him, but because she's afraid of her future already being written.

Despite her attempts to destroy her fate, she discovers a few things about stories that have already been told, and is given the task of stopping the Yeti who is trying to destroy the moon with terrible moonquakes, in revenge for an ancient ill.

And that's all I'll tell you about that, because to do more would spoil the story. But Valente's whimsical inventiveness is still in full force, and I love to follow along behind. Even more than that, there are these passages where she, as the narrator, tells us stories and lessons about growing up, and having a heart, and being in a story, and they are always perfect and sometimes they make me cry.

To sum up: I was occasionally lost, but always found my way again, and found that I was on exactly the path I wanted to be.