Erin Reilly-Sanders's Reviews > Gnat Stokes and the Foggy Bottom Swamp Queen

Gnat Stokes and the Foggy Bottom Swamp Queen by Sally M. Keehn
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's review
Aug 01, 10

bookshelves: fairytale, juvenile, fiction, fantasy
Read in January, 2009

After hearing rave reviews from my children's literature professor, I was somewhat skeptical of the book, but after giving it a fair try, I found it to be a really enjoyable read that combined a traditional fairy tale with a distintive and charming setting and a loveably human and humor main character. Having just read two other retellings of the Tam Lin tale and a bit from http://tam-lin.org/ about the colours and symbolism of elements of the story, it made the appearance of the bits of tradition much more interesting. My only complaint was at the begining of the story I was unsure as how much "magic" to expect in the story. When fantasy is combined with somewhat realistic fiction, this can create confusion. In some cases, the "magic" in only imagined while in others it is actually realized. Needless to say, I didn't really get into the story until I discovered that the main character was not inventing things, imagining, or being superstitious was rather bravely confronting really powerful, magical foes.
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