4 out of 4 stars
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Rainbow Soup by Laura Hanks Stevens is a children's fantasy story that takes the reader on a wild journey into magical and imaginative places. As the cover and title suggest, this book is based on the rainbow and its uses. As an unlimited source of color and magic, it supplies everything necessary to weave this tale.
Young Chantelle lives with her grandfather, Popper, near the Starfish Sea. She spends lots of time gathering shells from the beach when her grandfather is working, and one day she gets stung by a jellyfish and is rescued by fairies. Waking up in the rainbow, Chantelle discovers a fantastic world she never knew existed. When her new friends run into trouble and need her help, she knows she has to do something. Will she be able to rescue them and get back to Popper? To find out, you must read this book!
I loved the imagination used in the characterization of everything related to the sky in this book. The names of the Rainbow Fairies were so picturesque. Lady Lumenyara, The Guardian of Light, presents a good example. She welcomes Chantelle to the rainbow with a grand tour, and in doing so, pulls the reader even deeper into the story.
The character development was excellent in this book. I was able to feel the personality of each fairy. The many-faceted fairy types added an element of variety to the plotline that kept it interesting all the way through.
The book is intended for middle-grade readers, but it is equally enjoyable to younger children and adults. It is written in a friendly style that is easy to follow and makes a reader want to settle in for a long read. This writing style achieved that fairy-story feel that is so important to the fantasy world and was aided admirably with superb illustrations throughout the book as chapter page illustrations.
What I liked most about this book is the depth of emotion between Chantelle and her grandfather. It describes a deep connection between a devoted grandparent and grandchild that is felt keenly by the reader.
This tale is undeniably an excellently written original story suitable for the fairytale shelf in anyone's library. It has all of the elements belonging to a fairy tale, adventure, fantastic creatures, mythical places, and even desperate sadness. That thread of sadness woven throughout this book's length is what I disliked about it the most, although it fit the fairy story theme well.
I recommend this book to readers who enjoy the young adult genre. It may be too sad for younger children, so I don't recommend it for that age group. It would be pleasing to any reader who enjoyed Grimm's Fairytales by the Brothers Grimm as a child. It is exceptionally edited, and without further ado, I rate this book with 4 out of 4 stars.
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