THE GOBLIN BABY by Berlie Doherty


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Age Range: 7 - 10
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Tam has a strong reaction when his new baby sister is born: “I wish that baby would go away!” But Great-grandpa’s wisdom coupled with the present of his “most special thing,” encourages Tam to hold his sister and declare his love. Transformed, Tam names his sister Blue and spends all his time playing with her or with his Great-grandpa’s present—a kaleidoscope that he calls a starburster. Soon after Blue’s birth, the horrible happens. Blue is stolen and a changeling called Pix is left in her place, and it’s up to Tam to enter Faery to save his sister, with the help of the starburster, his memory and Pix herself. This is a fine introduction to the traditional changeling story, which is mostly unknown to American children. Harker’s frequent black-and-white line illustrations help younger readers keep the story going, but the complexity of the tale is for more experienced readers than the usual audience for the Stepping Stones series. Those who find it will be rewarded: Tam and Blue are charming characters, and Doherty’s storytelling is a treat. (Fantasy. 7-10)

Pub Date: May 26th, 2009
ISBN: 978-0-375-85841-3
Page count: 128pp
Publisher: Random House
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15th, 2009


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