Ivy and the Meanstalk by Dawn Lairamore
Posted by Caitie F on September 30, 2011
Summary (from goodreads):
After finding her long-lost fairy godmother, escaping a forthcoming marriage, and saving her kingdom from the dastardly designs of a scheming prince, Princess Ivy wants nothing more than to have a little fun and enjoy the company of her new dragon friend, Elridge.
But long ago a magical harp went missing, snatched by a thieving youth named Jack. Its rightful owner wants it back—or the entire kingdom will suffer an unspeakable fate! So Ivy and Elridge are off on another fairy-tale-inspired adventure, one that will take them across the sea, into the fiery depths of a magnificent golden kingdom, and high into the clouds, where an enormous castle looms at the top of a giant bean—that is, meanstalk. Will they find the harp in time?
This is a sequel, but you don’t have to have read the first book to enjoy this one. There were references to the first book, but it was not anything that you needed to know, which automatically made me enjoy this book a little more!
I love retelling of fairy tales, and this is one of the better ones I have read. I am sure you remember Jack and his thieving ways from Jack and the Beanstalk. Well, after stealing the gold, the hen, and the harp, Jack went and formed his own country that is obsessed with gold. I really enjoyed reading the bits of history that Jack made up to make himself look like a hero instead of the jerk he really was! It was fun and can teach kids a little about propaganda.
What makes the book are, as usual for middle grade books, the characters and the creativity! Ivy is a smart and adventurous girl, even though she learns along the way that she may need to spend more time studying and less time having fun. Elridge, her dragon friend. is a great sidekick. He is brave, funny, and brings a lot of excitement to the book. The prince of Jacktopia is also a very brave and smart boy who grows a lot and will be a good character for kids to see.
If you have a middle grade kid in your life (I would even say it is good for 8-14) I highly suggest you get them this book. It was so much fun to read and I really think kids will love it!