The Legend of Leelanauby Kathy-jo Wargin, Gijsbert van Frankenhuyzen, Gijsbert Van Frankenhuyzen
The young maiden Leelinau is forbidden from going into the Spirit Wood. But Leelinau so enjoys her time spent there with the Pukwudjinees (the tiny fairies of the forest) that she risks playing with them time and time again. The legend explores the resistance many of us harbor of entering adulthood. This is the fifth title written by Kathy-jo Wargin and illustrated by Gijsbert van Frankenhuyzen in our Legend series which currently has 400,000 copies in print. The Legend of the Sleeping Bear, the title that began the series, is the official State of Michigan childrens's book. "Leelinau was so happy to be in the Spirit Wood once again that she began to dance all around. Then she sat down amidst a mess of large tree roots that fit like a chair made just for her. But this time, as she sat there to rest, she heard strange whispers. At first, Leelinau thought it sounded like baby robins trying to catch their first breaths, or ferns being tossed back and forth in the wind. But Leelinau wasn't quite sure, so she listened more carefully. She heard more whispers, and then voices. Leelinau became frightened. Her heart pounded like a large drum in her chest, and her throat felt tight and narrow."
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I think this book is absolutely wonderful! Leelinau is a sweet, yet strong-willed and adventurous girl, and her story is totally enchanting, filled with joy and the magic of forests and fairies. The illustrations are exceptional, highly colorful and often amusing, and the fairies' song is completely beautiful and speaks to us deeply of the wonder and joy of childhood. A totally delightful read in every way!