A fairy navigates spellcasting troubles in this new offering from the author of Angelina Ballerina and its sequels (illustrated by Helen Craig, 1983, etc.).
On the first day of school, fairy Twinkle bursts into song and glows with excitement. Yet her enthusiasm wanes as she struggles to cast spells as skillfully as her friends Pippa and Lulu. Determined to master her homework that night, she forgets the correct words to her spells and causes a commotion that disrupts the inhabitants of Sparkle Tree Forest. Twinkle’s apology to the sleep-deprived creatures “for my silly spells” acknowledges her responsibility for the ruckus but also devalues her abilities. The real issue at hand is neither Twinkle nor her spellcasting. Rather, it’s her frustration at her inability to perform at her peers’ level—and nothing about that is silly. Thankfully, her observant teacher’s suggestion to play to her strengths supports Twinkle’s growth in both spellcasting and self-confidence. Detailed, cheerful (sometimes glittery) digital illustrations and several flourish-laden typefaces maintain a playful air. Quaint structures in the endpapers’ giant tree are labeled with names like “Pippa’s Pod” and “Library,” which orient readers to Twinkle’s world and hint at future installments. The fairies appear to be exclusively female and mostly white; Pippa is the only brown character, while an unnamed pale classmate with a dark, blunt bob could be read as Asian.
A sparkly, sugary first-day-of-school book with a lightly encouraging message. (Picture book. 3-6)