Fantasy Fair


Fantasy Fair
Bright Stories of Imagination 
by
Barbara Dubrovin 

ISBN-13: 9780963833969
ISBN-10: 0963833960

   $17.50.

Come to the Fair, Fantasy Fair! 
                Here you can surprise an Envoy on Unicorn Hill, teach a dragon to fly, climb a Sprite’s Gateway Tree, quest for a Lost Key, or follow a flying horse. With Trouble Trees, Balloon Plants, Healers, a witch, a troll, and a wizard, this is a fair like none you’ve ever visited! These illustrated tales introduce young (and still young-at-heart) readers to the diversity of fantasy sub-genres, while sharing the optimistic, insightful adventure that defines Bright Fantasy.
               The Fair gates are open, so come travel an easy and fun journey through high fantasy, magic realism, contemporary adventures, science fantasy and more. Come visit this bright oasis of positive stories.              

What Reviewers Say About This Book

"Written by award-winning author Barbara Dubrovin, Fantasy Fair: Bright Stories of Imagination is an anthology of delightful fantasy short stories, intended for young adults yet sure to delight purehearted fantasy lovers of all ages. A gamut of wondrous creatures populate the pages, from a dragon who needs to be taught how to fly to witches, trolls, wizards, and fabulous adventures such as the quest for the Lost Key. A handful of black-and-white illustrations grace this enjoyable and imaginative romp."
                                                
Children's Bookwatch, Midwest Book Review, May 2007

"Finally a book that shows not all fantasy has to be dark and gruesome to entertain and enlighten! This is a great collection of uplifting short stories that are easy to read for children. The "fair" approach gives you complete stories instead of excerpts and shows a variety of writing styles, making it a great teaching tool for a study on short stories in the classroom, too! And you can be confident the message behind the stories will inspire readers to see the world around them in a new light. Great book!"  5-star review on Amazon.com by Diana Cooley, April, 2007

When I was little I loved being read to. I still remember the magic of going to the public library around Christmas time and listening to a man dressed up like a conductor read THE POLAR EXPRESS. But what I liked best was when my parents read to me. It didn’t matter what: picture books, poetry, or novels.
          FANTASY FAIR is the sort of book I would have liked my mom to read out loud - and I think she would have enjoyed reading it, too. Some of the words are meant to be read out loud, like the name of the Dragon in “How to Teach a Dragon to Fly.” Can you say “Abgudabynnamassanoatiktikmasma-Toh” three times fast?
          Barbara Dubrovin’s short stories are perfect to read right before bed. You don’t have to worry about getting stuck at a really exciting part and agonizing about it until the next day, because these stories are easily read in one go. But I have to warn you that it would be hard to just read one.
          Some of my favorite stories were “Mac and My Trouble Tree” and “How High.” “Mac and My Trouble Tree” is about a magical sprite and a boy named Mac, who needs to stop a Trouble Tree from exploding. “How High” is about a Balloon Plant that can help you fly. You’ll have to read the book to find out what exactly a Trouble Tree is and how to work a Balloon Plant.
          Like a real fair, there are a lot of fun and exciting stories. There should be something in here to please most young fantasy fans. There are stories with witches, unicorns, and space ships. Stories set right here, in magical lands, and alternate realities. There’s even a guide in the back describing and naming the different kinds of fantasy. Here are just a few: Magical Realism (magic in the everyday), Science Fantasy (a blend of science fiction and fantasy), and High Fantasy (think knights, castles, and dragons).
          And best of all, these stories won’t give you nightmares. This book is horror-free!

Reviewed by: Natalie Tsang, TeensReadToo

Excerpts from Author Interviews

Describe Fantasy Fair.
     If I could sit next to you on the bus or at lunch, I’d take whatever we were eating or driving by, and spin it out into a fantasy, maybe with a refrigerator that eats food, or a troll that doesn’t want to be under that bridge. The stories would be uplifting and fun, and short enough to finish before we got where we’re going, and so interesting that you wouldn’t even notice the kid kicking your seat from behind, and would want to save a place for me when we got on the bus to come home so you could hear the next one (of a clumsy dragon? a sprite?). Fantasy Fair collects some of those so you can enjoy them even though I’m not there in person.

Where do you get your ideas?
     Everywhere! Sitting under a tree, doing laundry, going shopping, opening a door, all inspire stories begging to be told. Stories come at me so fast I keep a notebook where I jot down the gist of it until I have time and energy to write it out (weeks, months, years later). And then they compete in my head: me next! Me next! I’ve never understood “writer’s block” since for me the story idea is the easy part; the hard part is getting it out of my head and onto paper without mashing it too badly. Sometimes ideas come from other stories or people, too. I received a forwarded email with an old fable about a fellow who hangs his troubles on a tree before going into his house to be with his family, then picks up the trouble again in the morning only to find that there’s always less of it. I liked the message but immediately wondered: what about that poor tree? Getting dumped on all the time. Does it fill up? Are there others? And so “Mac and My Trouble Tree,” a reviewer’s favorite, was born. As a writer, whatever life throws at you gets transformed into a story. It just does.

 Tell us about writing Fantasy Fair. How long did it take?
     I never sat down to write a book. Friends who enjoyed my letters said I should write. So, I wrote stories when I had time and energy. I thought others would like to read them, but discovered that magazines have very specific requirements; finding the right editor for a story takes more effort than writing it! After getting some published and more rejected, I decided I’d rather write new stories than spend energy trying to get old ones published. It’s the next story that interests me, even if I’m the only reader. But then, relatives in the publishing business read some and said, “These are good! These should be in a book!” So, some were included in Storytelling Discoveries, which gave me co-author credit and won awards. The publisher then read more and agreed to a book of just my stories, collecting some of my fantasies to create Fantasy Fair. And some of those early stories that never found the right magazine editor, those are some of readers’ favorites now!

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