Just-turned-13 Jenny continues her adventures in fairyland but finds that she can’t always win (My Very UnFairy Tale Life, 2012).
Jenny knows she’s going on a dangerous mission this time, but she can’t bring herself to say no to best friends Trish and Melissa when they insist on coming along. Despite life-threatening dangers, the two friends remain enchanted about visiting the land where fairy tales originate, even though the evil witch Ilda has drained the land of its magic. If she is to restore the magic and save fairyland, Jenny must complete three impossible tasks in only three days. She manages to finish the first two with the help of Trish and Melissa. Jenny has never before encountered failure, but she has to cope with it when she can’t complete the final impossible task. But can Jenny really give up? Staniszewski again keeps her tone light and frothy with plenty of wry humor. A polite troll, keeper of the second impossible task, informs the girls, “Incidentally, my name is Irwin. I think we should be properly introduced before I suck the meat off your bones.” Middle school friendships offer a nice theme, as does Jenny’s casual acceptance of her fantasy life. The humor is balanced with a poignant subplot when Jenny learns that her long-lost parents disappeared from this very place, leading her to believe that she might be able to find them.
Flippant fantasy fun. (Fantasy adventure. 9-13)