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Tuesday, February 17, 2015

The Boy Who Lost Fairyland by Catherynne M. Valente Blog Tour & Giveaway!!

"A Changeling is a little bomb dropped by Fairyland upon the human world for fun and profit."

I'm very pleased to be kicking off the blog tour for The Boy Who Lost Fairyland by Catherynne M. Valente today! I've been an eager follower of this series from the beginning, and though, as some of you know, I had a weird reading funk where the third book unfortunately got left by the wayside, I'm glad to say that with this new installment (one very different from the ones that came before it), I've fallen right back into Fairyland — or should I say, out of Fairyland, as it is invading our turf this time 'round!

I've decided to save my full review for this year's Fairy Tale Fortnight, which I announced yesterday, because these books are just too good a fit to not include, but until then, I thought I'd treat you to a little snippet of the book. This scene, just after the Red Wind has spirited away a little troll-boy named Hawthorne, to replace him as a Changeling with a human from our world, was the first scene to really make me excited. Now, there had been plenty of lines and turns of phrase before this point that charmed, tickled and delighted me, but this scene, when I realized that this new book meant that we'd get to see Valente turn her hand to bringing out the absurd and fantastical in our own world, brought a very big smile to my face.

I love a good whimsical created world, I truly do, but I think the thing I love even more is when that whimsy spills over into our own world, seeps into our history and our ways of life, and tints it all in rose-colored magic. I love the places your mind can go with the alternate universes's"new information," and I love seeing how real people and events shape the authors decisions, and then our world is reshaped by those decisions, and on and on in this intricate tangle of real and make-believe. It delights the child and the creative person in me, as well as the absurdist, and this scene let me know that Fairyland number 4 would give me that in abundance — at least for a little while...

Enjoy the excerpt below, and then enter to win a copy of The Boy Who Lost Fairyland for yourself!
And don't forget to stop back by during Fairy Tale Fortnight for my full review of the book!

from The Boy Who Lost Fairyland by Catherynne M. Valente. Quoted from an advance copy, so wording may not be final. Any typos likely mine (but I tried to catch them all!)
"PARCEL?" the creature barked thunderously.
"What is that?" whispered Hawthorn.
The Red Wind smiled slowly, her whole face filling up with wicked delight. "Why that, my excitable little emerald, is a human. I should get acquainted, if I were you. I daresay you'll be seeing more of them."
"Can I touch it?"
The human scowled. "I've never heard the like!" she snapped. "How would you like it if I asked to touch you?"
Hawthorn shrugged. "You can touch me if you want," he said softly. And reached up his hand.
The human narrowed her eyes. She puffed out her cheeks like a great fish. Then she gave a short, hard laugh like a stamp marking a form and touched his fingers with hers. Her skin was soft and warm. His was hard and cold as stone — but for a troll, as hard and cold as stone is just the warmest and most wonderful thing to be.
"Pleased to meet you," said the human. "I am the Postmaster General for the Commonwealth of Australia. You may call me Mr. Benjamin Franklin. Everyone does."
"You don't look like a Mr. Benjamin," Hawthorn ventured.
The Postmaster General shuffled several envelopes together and tied them with twine before chucking them behind her into a large canvas bin.
"Long ago," the Red Wind explained, "a wizard called Benjamin Franklin became so powerful, by means of a magical lightning-wand and an excellent wig and a fell familiar in the shape of a kite, that he was made Postmaster of a vast kingdom. Using his monstrous magics, he, the kite, and the wig founded the Grand Society of the Golden Postilion, of which all Postmasters are members. That is why they are called Masters, you know. Each and every one of them is a great Master of Questing Physicks. How else could a magical sword find its way to the bottom of a lake just in time for a little baby kinglet to wander by? Or a coat of many colors to a shepherd's shoulders, or a spinning wheel to a locked and hidden room, or a girl in the shell of a hazelnut to an elderly couple longing for children? The Post is how the end of a story gets shipped safely to the beginning."

Thanks to the awesome people at Macmillan, I've got one copy of Catherynne M. Valente's The Boy Who Lost Fairyland to give away to one lucky winner! Giveaway is open to US residents only (sorry international peeps! Keep an eye out for giveaways during FTF!), and will run through the end of the blog tour/publication date of March 3rd! Fill out the Rafflecopter to enter.
Good luck, and make sure to visit the rest of the stops on the Fairyland blog tour!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The Boy Who Lost Fairyland by Catherynne M. Valente
Get It | Add It
Fantasy, 256 pages
Expected publication: March 3rd 2015 by Feiwel & Friends
When a young troll named Hawthorn is stolen from Fairyland by the Golden Wind, he becomes a changeling – a human boy -- in the strange city of Chicago, a place no less bizarre and magical than Fairyland when seen through trollish eyes. Left with a human family, Hawthorn struggles with his troll nature and his changeling fate. But when he turns twelve, he stumbles upon a way back home, to a Fairyland much changed from the one he remembers. Hawthorn finds himself at the center of a changeling revolution--until he comes face to face with a beautiful young Scientiste with very big, very red assistant.

Time magazine has praised Catherynne M. Valente's Fairyland books as "one of the most extraordinary works of fantasy, for adults or children, published so far this century." In this fourth installment of her saga, Valente 's wisdom and wit will charm readers of all ages.

Catherynne M. Valente is the author of over a dozen books of fiction and poetry. She lives on an island off the coast of Maine with her husband, two dogs, and an enormous cat. Visit her online at catherynnemvalente.com or on Twitter at @catvalente.

Ana Juan is a world-renowned illustrator best known in this country for her wonderful New Yorker magazine covers. She lives in Spain. Visit her online at anajuan.net.


  1. I've been seeing these books all over recently. I thought that they must be a children's book and blew them off for a bit, but I've finally looked into them thanks to your post. I really need to get into this series!! Thanks for sharing!!

  2. I love this series ( and everything else I've read by the author), and am eager to get my hands on a copy of this one. Perhaps I'll reread the series with my children to help pass the time.

  3. I've read Valente's orphan tales and thought her creation to be very unique, so many twists and turns and I'll probably read her other series 'The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making', Valente's books are worth reading if not for the othernworldly quality than for the fairytales that are rather new and unique, I have not read much about this series but I would definitely try to read it.

    well, I hope you have a lovely day.

  4. I absolutely loooove this series and this author - I would love to win this book!

  5. This is one of my favorite series. I was thrilled when I discovered that it wasn't a trilogy.

  6. I just really love this series. I love how they are written for middle-grade, but I find so much depth in them. I honestly think I've cried with each of them, so far. I'm really intrigued by the new character and I can't wait to see how this all ties together. Basically, Fairyland = lots of love and excitement!!!

  7. I flipping love these books. Hurray that another is coming!

  8. I love this series! I enjoy all of Cat's writing, but this series is such a delight. Her poetical prose is always a pleasure to loose myself in. I only wish I'd had these book when I was a child. <3

  9. I love Catherynne's work -- Her prose is absolutely beautiful. This series is a fantastic one, but my favorite book will be the one that beget this series -- Palimpsest. I've recommended her work to many of my friends, and have gotten them hooked on her beautiful work. I'm quite excited that there's another book coming to the Fairyland series. I can't wait for more work to follow afterwards.

  10. I love Catherynne's beautiful writing and whimsical storytelling. I am behind on the series (I own the first three books, but have one read the first one), but I'm eager to continue with the series and get to the new release.


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