Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Review: My Fair Godmother by Janette Rallison

Publisher: Walker Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: January 6th, 2009

Finding your one true love can be a Grimm experience!
After her boyfriend dumps her for her older sister, sophomore Savannah Delano wishes she could find a true prince to take her to the prom. Enter Chrissy (Chrysanthemum) Everstar: Savannah’s gum-chewing, cell phone–carrying, high heel-wearing Fair Godmother. Showing why she’s only Fair—because she’s not a very good fairy student—Chrissy mistakenly sends Savannah back in time to the Middle Ages, first as Cinderella, then as Snow White. Finally she sends Tristan, a boy in Savannah’s class, back instead to turn him into her prom-worthy prince. When Savannah returns to the Middle Ages to save Tristan, they must team up to defeat a troll, a dragon, and the mysterious and undeniably sexy Black Knight. Laughs abound in this clever fairy tale twist from a master of romantic comedy.
(Courtesy of Goodreads)

Initially, like many of the books I read, I picked up this book as a read-at-bedtime for my (almost) 10 year old daughter (yes, she still likes Mommy to read to her at bedtime, despite the fact that she can read as well, if not better than I can). I expected a cheesy romance that would be loved by tweens and young teens, but not by me. I can very happily report that this book was so much more than I expected!

I really enjoy a good fairy tale re-telling, but I am VERY picky about them. Most original fairy tales are just a few pages long, and I think it takes a really talented storyteller and writer to stretch that into a full-length novel that is worth reading. That said, I was very skeptical at the beginning of this one. The cover screamed, "Disney Channel" at me. Well, Disney Channel it was not! It was clever, well written, full of life lessons (in a non-preachy way), and FUN! At times it had my daughter and I laughing until our sides hurt. I loved the premise of a "Fair Godmother"; basically a godmother that was nowhere near the top of her fairy godmother training school. Chrissy was a flaky, self-absorbed mess, and it was evident in the way that she interacted with her assigned charge (Savannah). Savannah was rather flaky and self-absorbed herself. When given her three wishes, she made some pretty shallow ones, and the adventures began...  This book was actually so well done, that I may re-read it to myself, and I definitely am recommending it to all of Emma's friends and their moms.  Emma and I had so many great conversations based on this book, which is great since she is entering a phase where most of out Mommy/Daughter conversations consist of her complaining and me yelling...  I'm sure the author's intentions didn't include facilitating parent/child interaction, but I have to thank her for it nonetheless!

I love it when a book so thoroughly surprises me, as this one did. I am now a big fan of Janette Rallison, and quite eager to read this book's recently released sequel, My Unfair Godmother. I will also probably read some of her other books in the very near future (It's a Mall World After All, Just One Wish). Keep your eye out for the reviews!

My Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Grade Level Recommendation: Obviously, if I was reading this to my 10 year old (rising 5th grader), it is clean. It is squeaky clean, as a matter of fact. No sex, drinking, drug use, language, or mature themes. There is some innocent romance; a little kissing, and that's it. I would say that this book is appropriate for ages 8+ (3rd grade+).


  1. Nice review! I've seen this one on a few blogs but I was hesitant to pick it up because I didn't think it would have much appeal for an adult. I love it when books that look "kid-ish" end up being smart and fun. I'll have to pick it up. :)

  2. Your review reminded me that I so need to check out this book. :) I've seen it on a few other blogs, and I'm really inspired to check it out. Thank you for such an awesome review!

  3. I've recently fallen in love with this author. All of her stuff is great in the same way. Great romances that don't involve obsession or simpering or needing to be saved and smart heroines.

    You're lucky your little one still lets you read to her. Mine stopped letting us the summer after kinder. She likes the narrators in her audio books better because they don't stop after one chapter. Now we just read our books to ourselves at the same time.


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