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Marigold and the Feather of Hope, The Journey Begins (The Fairy Chronicles Series #1)
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Marigold and the Feather of Hope, The Journey Begins (The Fairy Chronicles Series #1)

4.8 25
by J. H. Sweet, Tara Larsen Chang (Illustrator)

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Illustrations By: Tara Larsen Chang

Inside you is the power to do anything

Meet Beth, who's just discovered something incredible... she is a fairy, a marigold fairy, to be exact.

But Beth must learn to be a fairy during an emergency! The Feather of Hope has been lost and Beth must enlist the aid of her dog, Peanut, in a daring mission to rescue it from a


Illustrations By: Tara Larsen Chang

Inside you is the power to do anything

Meet Beth, who's just discovered something incredible... she is a fairy, a marigold fairy, to be exact.

But Beth must learn to be a fairy during an emergency! The Feather of Hope has been lost and Beth must enlist the aid of her dog, Peanut, in a daring mission to rescue it from a house occupied by dangerous gremlins. And if Beth, her new fairy friends and Peanut can't get the Feather back, all hope will be lost...forever.

What if you discovered you had magical fairy powers? Meet the girls of The Fairy Chronicles, otherwise normal girls like you who are blessed by Mother Nature with special gifts. Their extraordinary adventures will change the world!

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

This overwritten tale launches the Fairy Chronicles, a formerly self-published series starring girls who have fairy identities. At the center of this story is nine-year-old Beth-aka Marigold-who is not looking forward to spending two weeks with her eccentric Aunt Evelyn ("Dread settled in deeper and her dark brown eyes glazed over in boredom while she thought again about the fun things she'd rather be doing"). But things start to look up when Aunt Evelyn announces they are both fairies, and tells the girl how to morph into her fairy persona. After Beth is transformed into a marigold-like fairy (complete with wings, a dress resembling flower petals and an enchanted pussy-willow-branch wand which, when stroked, "quivered and purred"), she and her aunt, whose fairy form resembles a monarch butterfly, attend a fairy gathering. They are given the task of retrieving the precious Feather of Hope, which the brownie folk have lost, from a house inhabited by gremlins. Beth emerges as the heroine after she recruits her pet dog to scare off the gremlins, enabling the fairies (using glittering pixie dust) to repair items these creatures have broken. Illustrated with mediocre art and weighed down by extraneous detail, this heavy-handed caper never takes flight. Another young fairy claims the spotlight in Dragonfly and the Web of Dreams, due out the same month. Ages 7-up. (May)

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
Children's Literature - Gwen Vanderhage
Beth has to spend two weeks with her Aunt Evelyn, who is kind of boring and embarrassing; she would much rather play videogames and watch TV. What Beth does not realize is that her aunt has a big secret and an adventure for her this summer—Beth and her aunt are both fairies! Aunt Evelyn teaches Beth all about how to be a fairy, change shape, do magic. Beth and her aunt meet other fairies and creatures from folklore like brownies, gremlins, and gnomes. When the Feather of Hope that spreads hope around the world is lost, the fairies must go on a mission to find it. Readers who love other fairy series may enjoy this first installment in "The Fairy Chronicles" series. The premise does not seem fully fleshed out by the author—why is it that humans become fairies? When trying to send a message about kindness to fellow man and the earth, the story is preachy. While the book seems to be packaged for the early chapters set, the vocabulary would be too sophisticated for that age group. On the other hand, the story is too simple for middle readers. The full-color illustrations are beautiful and perfectly match the text. Information about plants, insects, and the Cottingley fairies is included at the end of the book.
School Library Journal

Gr 2-4
This first book in a new series is fun fluff that will appeal to a variety of readers. When nine-year-old Beth Parish spends two weeks with Aunt Evelyn, she is surprised to learn that she is a marigold fairy and that her aunt is a monarch butterfly fairy and her mentor. She gives Beth her first wand, a pussy willow branch. A handbook appears out of thin air and will age with the child, providing more information as she matures. Her aunt takes Beth to a fairy circle where she meets a diverse group of girls her age. The brownies have lost the feather of hope and the girls must rescue it from a house that has gremlins. This easy chapter book is nicely designed with full-page, attractive pastel-colored paintings and accents at chapter beginnings and throughout the book. An opening spread introduces the four girls that make up the fairy team. Back matter features a recipe, fairy facts, and information on the Cottingley fairies. Children who want to practice their reading wings will probably be enticed to keep turning pages.
—Debbie S. HoskinsCopyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

Publication date:
Fairy Chronicles Series , #1
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.32(d)
940L (what's this?)
Age Range:
7 - 12 Years

Read an Excerpt

Fairy Things
Her fairy dress came to just above her knees and seemed to be made of yellow and gold crinkly marigold petals in a sort of overlapping striped pattern. She had the same fawn belt and slippers as her aunt. The crown of flowers contrasted beautifully with the golden brown curls on her head, and the petals of her wispy dress shone like the sun. Beth, who never cared much for her looks before, had to admit she was a beautiful fairy.

Aunt Evelyn landed beside her with a small whoosh, taking her hand and saying, "Now we're going to fly. Go on, try your wings." Beth looked over her shoulder and tried to move her wings. Just by thought, her wings began moving very fast, in whispery waves that tickled her ears, and she was lifted several inches off the sofa, her aunt beside her. She then concentrated on slowing her wings and landed with a slight bounce.

"Good job!" exclaimed her aunt. "Now we'll try going around the room." They lifted off, still holding hands and circled the room three times. "Just imagine a nice soft landing," Aunt Evelyn instructed, and they floated down, landing gently on the sofa. Beth, excited and proud, was all smiles as her aunt hugged her tightly.

Meet the Author

J.H. Sweet has always looked for the magic in the everyday. She has an imaginary dog named Jellybean Ebenezer Beast. Her hobbies include hiking, photography, knitting, and basketry. She also enjoys watching a variety of movies and sports. Her favorite superhero is her husband, with Silver Surfer coming in a close second. She loves many of the same things the fairies love, including live oak trees, mockingbirds, weathered terra-cotta, butterflies, bees, and cypress knees. In the fairy game of "If I were a jelly bean, what flavor would I be?" she would be green apple. J.H. Sweet lives with her husband in South Texas and has a degree in English from Texas State University.

Ever since she was a little girl, Tara Larsen Chang has been captivated by intricate illustrations in fairy tales and children's books. Since earning her BFA in Illustration from Brigham Young University, her illustrations have appeared in numerous children's books and magazines. When she is not drawing and painting in her studio, she can be found working in her gardens to make sure that there are plenty of havens for visiting fairies.

Customer Reviews

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Marigold and the Feather of Hope, the Journey Begins 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 23 reviews.
brightmyer More than 1 year ago
Beth (aka Marigold) is a 9 year old girls sent to stay with her eccentric Aunt for a 2 week summer vacation. It is during this vacation Beth learns she is a Fairy - a Marigold Fairy to be percise. Her aunt is also a Fairy - a Monarch Butterfly Fairy - and she will be Beth's mentor in the Fairy World.

We also get to meet some other Fairies: Jennifer the Dragonfly Fairy, Grace the Thistle Fairy and Lenox the Firefly Fairy. In this first book, the Fairies must retrieve the Feather of Hope, which has gone missing. The Feather of Hope ...
"is the means by which all hope on Earth is replenished and distributed".
The Brownies are the keepers of the Feather of Hope, but they were careless and the Feather was accidentally picked up by a human. It is up to the Fairies to retrieve the Feather of Hope from the humans and Beth and her Fairy friends come up with a plan.

All my life, I have had a love of fairy tales, but as an adult I realized there were very few new fairy tales being written today. J. H. Sweet has written a wonderful introduction into the realm of fairy tales and her Fairy Chronicles are sure to be favorite books for the children in your life.
Guest More than 1 year ago
A wonderful beginning for a series! Mixing nature, fantasy, and reality, the author of this book has woven an interesting and complex tale with endless possibilities for sequels. My daughters and I look forward to discovering more about the fairies J.H. Sweet has created. We loved the gremlins, the fairy handbook entries and the part Beth's dachshund plays in this adventure. In this book, Beth discovers she is a fairy, learns about some of her abilitlies and tools and meets other girls gifted with fairy spirits. The fairies then take on a huge task to recover the Feather of Hope. Nature protection, acceptance of others and the benefits of teamwork are also worked into this story. Fairies are given gifts relating to their counterparts in nature. For example, Dragonfly is very speedy. Marigold can repel insects. We can't wait to learn what gifts other future fairies of this series have and how they are going to use them. This is a detailed book and a wonderful basis to build upon for a great series. We recommend it very highly.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This author has found an exciting way to entertain while exposing young readers to diverse cultures and nature appreciation. I have read the book to my 3 year old daughter, and amazingly the story held her interest! She actually asked when we were going to read the story again. Thank you for making this excellent adventure available for readers of all ages.
gh-balcer More than 1 year ago
This is more than about magic and fairies. It is about family, hope and growing up. Beth (Marigold) makes a journey of discovery that is both fun and meaningful. This is a nice beginning to a fairy-tale saga and sets up the series nicely. I was very touched by Beth's attitude toward her strange aunt and how that changed as she discovered one of the reasons her aunt is strange (being a fairy). The girls getting to know one another and working together is also nice. I was charmed by both the dachshund and the gremlins, even though they are supposed to be the bad guys. This was a very good story and about so much more than just magic.
Mira_E_White More than 1 year ago
I loved all the characters in this book. They were fun and interresting. I wanted the book as soon as I looked at it. The illustrator drew the most beautiful pictures I have ever seen. The book was just as good. I loved the relationship between Beth and her aunt the way it changed and grew. I love the dog Peanut he was a wonderful addition to the story. I can't wait to read all the books and get to know the other characters better. I know all the stories will be as charming and delightful as this one and impossible to put down. I haven't enjoyed a good read like this one in years! Two thumbs up for J.H. Sweet and Tara Larsen Chang. Their team work is unbeatable. Please read this book I promise you won't regret it. So cuddle up in your soft blankets and settle in for warm fuzzies as you travel to another world!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed reading this book very much. I originally got it for my granddaughter. We read part of it together before bedtime and I stay up to read the rest myself that very night. What we liked most: the fairies are not just fairies they are also girls. The nature parts were nice too. We will be reading again.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Young children will not only be delighted to see fairies and brownies of all sorts, but to also see that those same creatures are real children as well. The reading level is basic and carries with it a much deeper message of caring and helping others. With full color illustrations, this is a good series for young ones to launch their independent reading with.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have been reading the Fairy Chronicles series for about two years now, both the online e-Books and the first two published books. My daughter and I love the stories of trolls, dragons, elves, Jack Frost, etc. The first book has a wonderful storyline with fairies, gremlins, and an adventure to recover the Feather of Hope. It is a short book, but it is a lovely fairytale. I will be reading this again for pleasure in the years to come. I recommend it for all ages of fairy and fairytale lovers.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I love pixy folk. This book is so much fun and a magnificent beginning to a wonderful fairytale saga. There are so many interesting segments in this book. For example, I didn't know that fairies love lemon jellybeans and can get lost in jigsaw puzzles, or that the fairy handbook is everchanging and interactive, or that gnomes add colors to nature. I am also delighted to find out that gnomes can disguise themselves, which is why I never see any in my garden. The job of the brownies is very interesting too, along with the three things gremlins are afraid of. The detail in this book is really incredible. My daughter was so excited to discover that trees have meaning. This story really peaked her interest, and we have since looked up tree and flower meanings. Also, I had no idea that marigold flowers can repel bugs. That is great information to know. I love the various forms that mother nature can take, and the mention of migrating monarch butterflies. My daughter looked up migrating monarchs right after reading this book. I am impressed that she has learned so much just from this story. We are now both excited to read additional books of this series, especially since we have found out that there are bat, spider and snake fairies to read about.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a really good book. It is about a girl who finds out she is a fairy. Then she has to go with her friends to rescue the feather of hope from gremlins. I read this book to my little sister. She thinks it is the best book of all time. I think Harry Potter books are better because they are longer. She likes this book because it is shorter. Maybe this book is better because it is more about girls. Mom printed us another Fairy Chronicles book from the internet. We both like it because it is about a peaceful dragon. We are keeping it in a folder to read again. My sister wants a pussywillow wand. She will get one because she is five. I want a wooden wand because it is more grown up like Harry Potter. I want a daschund but I can't have one because we already have a poodle. This is a very very good book. You should read it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
As an avid reader of fairy stories, I was extremely surprised to discover that the fairy characters in this book are real girls. But it makes sense for the fairies to be real human beings since there is so much at stake for mankind with the possible loss of all hope on earth. The fairies show impressive courage in battling the gremlins to rescue the Feather of Hope. If the concept put forth in this story were real, I wonder how girls this young (8 years old) could possibly handle the responsibility of the job of protecting nature and fixing the world's serious problems. It is certainly something for young girls to aspire to. Beth's initial attitude regarding her aunt's peculiarities really struck a cord with me as I remember being embarrassed in my youth to be seen with an eccentric relative. In many ways, this is a story we can all feel connected to. Shortly after reading this book, I saw a migrating monarch butterfly and actually wondered - Are you perhaps a fairy? This is ideal reading for girls 8-13, or anyone who enjoys children's fantasy.
MomsChoiceAwards More than 1 year ago
The Fairy Chronicles Series is a recipient of the prestigious Mom's Choice Award. The Mom&rsquo;s Choice Awards honors excellence in family-friendly media, products and services. An esteemed panel of judges includes education, media and other experts as well as parents, children, librarians, performing artists, producers, medical and business professionals, authors, scientists and others. A sampling of the panel members includes: Dr. Twila C. Liggett, ten-time Emmy-winner, professor and founder of PBS&rsquo;s Reading Rainbow; Julie Aigner-Clark, Creator of Baby Einstein and The Safe Side Project; Jodee Blanco, New York Times best-selling Author and; LeAnn Thieman, motivational speaker and coauthor of seven Chicken Soup For The Soul books. Parents and educators look for the Mom&rsquo;s Choice Awards seal in selecting quality materials and products for children and families.
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Guest More than 1 year ago
I read this book to my four-year-old daughter, and she has since become obsessed with it. We continue to read it chapter by chapter, over and over again each night. She runs around the house and back yard pretending to be Marigold and Dragonfly, and she has demanded a peacock feather wand and a fairy handbook. After doing some research on this series, I have discovered that the pages of a fairy handbook appear blank to ordinary people, so it was easy to buy a blank journal and print a label for the cover. Now, she writes in her fairy handbook daily with crayons, usually 3 giant words per page, and draws pictures of butterflies and fairies. Having almost memorized this book, I am looking forward to the day whan she can read it on her own. I recommend Marigold and the Feather of Hope to any parent of a fairy princess with a word of warning - this story can be addictive.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Forget what you think you know about fairies, gnomes, brownies, and gremlins. This is a whole new ¿world of fairies.¿ Though the author incorporates some traditional lore, this concept of ¿fairies among us¿ is quite interesting and refreshing. I very much look forward to future tales of the girl-next-door using her secret fairy powers to save us all from doom.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I loved the first book and have also read several of the e-books and they are simply wonderful and well written. You have got to check out this new author and I hope to see more books published as well.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Very quirky and imaginative. Enjoyable plot with adorable characters and surprising events. Highly recommended.
Guest More than 1 year ago
My daughter loved reading this book and couldn't stop talking about it so I read it myself. It reminds me of the stories I read growing up, with endearing and memorable charcters. We have since read some of the E-Books of the The Fairy Chronicles series and have found them completely enchanting as well.
Guest More than 1 year ago
It is always wonderful to discover a talented new voice in children's literature, and here she is. With a gift for the teaching of gentle but important lessons, J.H. Sweet has written the first in a series of captivating stories that takes readers to a mythical land of fairies and gnomes where even the youngest can do their part to preserve hope in the world.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Marigold and The Feather of Hope is a must read for all ages. Girls, ages 7-14, will find strength, power, and wisdom in J.H. Sweet's words. Vivid, colorful characters and settings make the story come alive. The story-line is captivating and intriguing, and it keeps you reading until the last page. Looking forward to the next books in the series.