Whistle Bright Magic: A Nutfolk Tale

Whistle Bright Magic: A Nutfolk Tale

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by Barb Bentler Ullman
     
 

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It has been twenty years since the time of The Fairies of Nutfolk Wood, and grownup Willa has returned to Plunkit with her daughter, Zelly. Willa can't see the fairies anymore, but Zelly can, and she meets an unusual boy—the last remaining fairy child living in Nutfolk Wood, Ronald Whistle Bright.

Hard times have befallen the fairy town of

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Overview

It has been twenty years since the time of The Fairies of Nutfolk Wood, and grownup Willa has returned to Plunkit with her daughter, Zelly. Willa can't see the fairies anymore, but Zelly can, and she meets an unusual boy—the last remaining fairy child living in Nutfolk Wood, Ronald Whistle Bright.

Hard times have befallen the fairy town of Nutfolk Wood, but Whistle Bright is determined to stay in his forest village, even though humans are sure to destroy it. And Zelly wants to stay in the small town of Plunkit, even though her mother insists that they return to their lives in the big city. Zelly is convinced that she belongs in Plunkit, and only there will she find out more about her father, who disappeared when she was three.

In their quest to stay in the place that they love, the tiny Nutfolk boy and the human girl become allies, and both are surprised by the unexpected things that can happen in life.

Barb Bentler Ullman's follow-up to The Fairies of Nutfolk Wood is another charming story infused with magic and hopefulness.

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 4–6—This story takes place 20 years after the events in The Fairies of Nutfolk Wood (HarperCollins, 2006). Willa has a daughter, Zelly, who takes center stage in this novel, as she and her mother return to the small town of Plunkit for her grandmother's funeral. Willa is anxious to return to the city since being in Plunkit brings back bad memories of Zelly's father. But the child feels at home for the first time, bonding with two new friends as they meet the fairy inhabitants of the surrounding forest—fairies who are in danger of losing their homes to a housing development. Though the story can stand alone, readers who are familiar with the first book may feel more connected to the characters and the significance of the old house and the paintings of the Nutfolk. The first-person narration is an effective way of showing Zelly's thoughts and emotions, though at times some of her insights seem precocious for a child of her age. At the center of the story is the fairy boy, Whistle Bright, who is at first hostile toward Zelly, but who grows to learn that human children aren't so different from his own kind. Their relationship, as well as Zelly connecting with the father she never knew, provides the book's emotional drive. The story lacks an active threat from the housing developers, but overall it is a satisfying read.—Amanda Raklovits, Champaign Public Library, IL
Children's Literature - Beverley Fahey
A now grown Willa (heroine of The Fairies of Nutfolk Wood c.2006) and her daughter Zelly have returned to Plunkit for the funeral of Willa's mother. The two hope to stay on in Plunkit long enough for Willa to put her mother's affairs in order and turn over her Bookstore to a family member. For Zelly's part she is delighted to attend a new school and make two new friends, even if they are all oddly different from one another. To Zelly's delight she is able to see the fairy folk and makes the acquaintance of Ronald Whistle Bright, the last fairy child in Nutfolk Wood. The wood has fallen on hard times as development has destroyed much of the forest that so ably has hidden the wee folk. Zelly and her friends hatch a plan to help the fairies, but it is thwarted by her mother's desire to return to the city by Christmas. Zelly also wants to learn more about the father who abandoned them when she was very small and she believes that in Plunkit she will get her answers. When Zelly and her friends happen upon a deserted cabin in the woods and meet the man who lives there, Zelly is convinced that this is her father and sets out to prove to her mother that he is a changed man. This fist person narrative blends fantasy with reality into a cohesive and credible whole. The story stands alone, but interested readers may want to go back and read the first book to experience Willa's childhood encounter with the fairies. There are hard emotional issues to be dealt with and these are nicely handled. The children's belief in the fairies has a charm and innocence that is refreshing. This would pair well with Afternoon of the Elves, by Lisle Janet Taylor c.1989 Penguin Putnam. Reviewer: Beverley Fahey

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780061992094
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
02/09/2010
Sold by:
HARPERCOLLINS
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
224
File size:
304 KB
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

Meet the Author

Barb Bentler Ullman is the author of the highly praised The Fairies of Nutfolk Wood. She lives with her family—husband Jim, two daughters, and a vicious kitty named Apricot—in a house that her husband built in the foothills of the Cascade Mountains of Washington State. "My daughter Sara once came up with the idea for an American woodland fairy. She was glue-gunning acorns together and calling them ‘nut babies.' They resided in pretty places in our woods, living quiet, natural lives. One thing led to another."

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Whistle Bright Magic 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I adore the fairieof nutfolk woods
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Linda20 More than 1 year ago
While being highly interactive between the characters, "Whistle Bright Magic" allows the reader to ponder their own emotions in this magical, energetic story. Zelly, Willa's daughter, explores her new awareness of hope, disappointment and lonliness with new friends as she returns to Plunkit. The pages practically turn themselves as Zelly's quest for information about her past and present unfolds. The story has humor, emotion and layers of personality that will delight all readers. I highly recommend it!