In this inventive take on the traditional Cinderella tale, Fanny Agnes is a sturdy farm girl with a big dream. Someday, she believes, she will marry a prince. When the town mayor announces he is throwing a grand ball, Fanny is convinced her time has come. She puts on her best calico dress and goes out to the garden so that she'll be ready when her fairy godmother arrives. As the seconds tick by, Fanny waits and waits. Finally, she hears a voice. It isn't her fairy godmother-but it is someone who will change her life forever.
Ages 6^-9. A truly wonderful mix of storytelling and art from a husband-wife team with a fine sense of humor. Having a familiar fairy tale at its heart, this homespun yarn tells the whimsical story of a small-town girl who has big dreams. Fanny Agnes is convinced that if Cinderella could go to the ball and meet a handsome prince "once upon a time, it could happen again. After all, what were fairy godmothers for?" But when farmer Heber Jensen shows up instead of a fairy godmother, Fanny takes it in stride. After an hour of serious thought ("even with all that moonlight" ), she gives up her dreams and accepts his marriage proposal. It's a total surprise when, years later, the fairy godmother, all glittery in pink and blue and yellow, finally shows up to take Fanny away. The story may be too subtle for the usual picture-book audience, which must be able to appreciate the wit as well as the parody. But Fanny Agnes is a delight: a feminist with a wry sense of humor, she balances her dreams with common sense and a loving heart. What's more, there's plenty for youngsters to enjoy in the robust, bucolic pictures, which seem almost to jump off the page. Rich, glowing colors and a plethora of detail--from pictures on walls to animal shapes in the clouds and a spunky black cat to search out on each spread--give the story enough charm and energy to make it a favorite. --Stephanie Zvirin
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Publisher's Weekly Review
Pminty: (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
School Library Journal Review
K-Gr 3A warmhearted story with striking illustrations to match. Fanny Agnes is a "sturdy girl" who foresees a princeor at least the mayor's sonas the man of her dreams. She's even depending on her fairy godmother to provide one for her. But she marries Heber Jensen, a farmer, and they share a life filled with ups and downs, babies, laughter, and love. Finally, when the fairy godmother arrives (several years late), Fanny Agnes has discovered that she doesn't need her anymoreshe's found her prince. The characters' expressive, round, cartoonlike faces give form to their personalities. Buehner's farm scenes, so dramatically angled and brilliantly hued in Jerdine Nolen's Harvey Potter's Balloon Farm (Lothrop, 1994), are softer here, with a more muted palette. Especially effective are overhead sky views, such as the scene of the fairy godmother flying over the watermelon patch toward a content Fanny. Fanny's strength is not the epic kind found in a tall-tale heroine like Anne Isaacs's Swamp Angel (Dutton, 1994); hers is strength of character to recognize the dreams that make life worthwhile.Jane Marino, Scarsdale Public Library, NY (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Caralyn Buehner grew up in Salt Lake City, Utah and won state and national awards for her writing during her teenage years. After she married illustrator Mark Buehner, he encouraged her to write and they have collaborated on many children's picture books. Her works include The Escape of Marvin the Ape (1992), A Job for Wittilda (1993), It's a Spoon, Not a Shovel (1995), Fanny's Dream (1996), I Did It, I'm Sorry (1998), I Want to Say I Love You (2001), Snowmen at Night (2002), Superdog: the Heart of a Hero (2004). and Snowmen at Christmas (2005). Her writing has been honored with two Utah Children's Choice Awards, a CBC Children's Choice Award, Parent's Choice Award, an ALA Notable Book, and a Boston Globe-Horn Book Honor Award.
(Bowker Author Biography)