THE GIRL WITH THE GREEN EAR by Margaret Mahy
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THE GIRL WITH THE GREEN EAR

Stories About Magic in Nature
by & illustrated by
Age Range: 8 - 12
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KIRKUS REVIEW

Nine more stories, written by the versatile New Zealander in the 70's but only now published here; their common theme of being in tune with the natural world makes them especially apposite to the 90's. The "magic" isn't always supernatural: since he's lonely, "The Good Wizard of the Forest" plants trees and talks to them while they share his meals (he gives them "plant food cake"); in the end, the grandchildren of those who used to fear him deem him good because he has planted a forest. The title story is about a girl seeking independence from her father, a musical conductor; she thrives in the business of restoring wilted plants by playing the harp to them. Mahy's astringent common sense is in evidence: in "The Trees," all the children but one enjoy seeing a row of dangerously old pines cut down, and even that one child is reconciled by the genuine sympathy of the adults involved and a reprieve for her favorite, the swing tree. Realistic or merrily fantastical, these tales have a special sweetness: a delightful blend of tried-and-true storylines (more than one ends in a happy marriage), language that's witty or lyrical but always fresh, uniquely imaginative settings, and pungently original characters. All this plus vintage b&w drawings by the talented Hughes. A treasure. (Short stories. 8-12)

Pub Date: April 1st, 1992
ISBN: 0-679-82231-3
Page count: 104pp
Publisher: Knopf
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1st, 1992




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