The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making by Cathrynne M. Valente


The moment I saw the title of this book I knew that I would never be able to resist it- it was the exact combination of verbosity, whimsy, and strange Victorian elegance that I adore. Combine the beautiful descriptive title with a lovely cover straight out of one's favorite fairy tales, add a snippet regarding a bibliophile Wyvern and a quest through unimagined lands, and resistance was futile. 

The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making by Cathrynne M. Valente is a madcap romp through the imagination that pays homage to all of the unforgettable masters of fantasy without losing itself in the task. Part Alice, part Dorothy, part every heroine ever dreamed of, this is the story of the young September who is whisked off to Fairyland by the dashing Green Wind in order to help free the realm from the clutches of the wicked Marquess, a cruel and unpredictable villain who will stop at nothing to make sure faeries are nice and fairyland ordered. However, in order to fully realize her devious plans for Fairyland, the Marquess needs something from the dangerous Enchanted Woods near the Province of Autumn, something only September can get for her, an object of great power without which, she will never succeed. So, with her own life and those of her friends on the line, the brave September sets off on her grand quest, braving wild Velocipedes, vengeful objects, starry lions, and Death, itself.

Like all good fairy stories, however, The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making, is the story of friendship, of love both old and new, of the struggle to grow up, the importance of the imagination, the complicated matter of sacrifice, and the choices we make along the way. Readers will not be able to help falling in love with September; the library-born Wyvern, A through L; and the mysterious boy of the sea, Saturday; and will undoubtedly turn the page clamoring for September's next adventure.

{images}: Barnes & Noble

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