Crown. Dec. 2019. 208p. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9781524718787.
Gr 3-6–This fantasy adventure, translated from Finnish, is inspired by classics like Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Hans Christian Andersen’s The Snow Queen. It’s the story of Alice, who lives with her family in a place where snow is normal—but one year, the snow comes so early and with so much intensity that the 11-year-old starts to think something is wrong. One day, she spies a dragonfly, a creature seriously out of place, and follows it. Much like Alice in Wonderland, she ends up in a fantastical land of endless summer, with beautiful and unfamiliar creatures. She finds a girl named Marissa who, much like herself, seeks adventure. Alice and Marissa enjoy their time in Sisterland, but start forgetting their families and set out on a quest to find Queen Lili, who might be able to send them home. It turns out there is a prophecy about the two girls and the Queen. Magical creatures are discovered and a great battle ensues. There are overarching themes of friendship, including how to be a friend and the lengths people go to support each other. The enchanting writing contains rich descriptions and similes, and will be accessible to reluctant readers. This story is strongly centered in Western European culture; readers who don’t have background knowledge of it may struggle to connect.
VERDICT A good choice for lower middle grade collections seeking fantasy adventure stories with strong female friendships.

Be the first reader to comment.

Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing