Alison's Reviews > I, Coriander

I, Coriander by Sally Gardner
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Apr 23, 12

bookshelves: confident-readers-chapter-books
Read from April 15 to 22, 2012

** spoiler alert ** This is a wonderful fairy tale novel. Coriander, growing up in the era of Cromwell's protectorate after the Royalist defeat in the Civil War, is the daughter of a wealthy merchant. Her mother is well known as a herbalist and healer, and, Coriander learns, is from Fairyland.

Coriander's mother dies, and since rumours are abounding of his sympathies, her father is advised to marry a good Puritan woman. So Coriander acquires a wicked stepmother in Maud, and a cowed, frightened stepsister in Hester. Then Maud brings Arise Fell, a Puritan preacher, into the house, and Coriander's world is shattered. She journeys to Fairyland, and there learns that she has the courage and intelligence to defeat evil both there and in the real world.

I loved this book. It works for me as a fairy tale: there is a wicked fairy queen, a handsome though enchanted prince, a princess who is not aware that she is a princess, even a magic mirror.

Other reviewers have complained about the historical accuracy, that witches were less persecuted under the Puritans than under James 1, which is probably true- but firstly, think about Salem witch trials- the inhabitants were most definitely Puritans- and secondly, Maud and Arise are not Puritans, they are *spoiler* false prophets and opportunists of the worst kind. Highly recommended for confident readers, 8+.
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04/17/2012 page 37
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