Summary: Kelley Winslow is excited to be promoted from understudy to the role of Titania, queen of the faeries in an off-Broadway production of William Shakespeare’s Midsummer Night’s Dream when the lead actress breaks her ankle. Though Kelley is immersed in the world of faeries in her professional life, when the faerie world starts bleeding into her personal life, she remains a bit skeptical. A chance meeting with Sonny Flannery sparks an attraction and a trip down a rabbit hole of sorts as Kelley finds out that not only is she a faerie herself, but she is the daughter of the king of faeries who was abducted by a human woman when she was just a baby. It’s the end of October, which means the gate between the faerie world and the human world is open for nine days, or, in other words, just enough time to turn Kelley’s world completely upside-down.
Number of Pages: 327
Age Range: 13-15
Review: Full of action, secrets, and romance, Wondrous Strange by Lesley Livingston takes Kelley from pretending to be a faerie in the famous Shakespeare play to finding out that she actually is one.
Faeries seem to be mischievous and evil, stealing babies from humans because they have trouble having their own. But this child-napping is what starts all the trouble as some mothers aren’t willing to just let their babies go. It’s especially frustrating when Sonny and his friends reveal being abducted means the children and the adults they become have no home at all. Faeries aren’t known for being particularly loving, and end up treating their new children much like pets and playthings.
For Kelley though, a faerie taken by humans, life is different. She does belong in the human world, and she has many people who care about her. I think this is why it appears to be so easy for her to give up her faerie powers in order to protect Sonny and salvage any relationship that might be in their future. One, she doesn’t know what she is really giving up. And two, she has no yearning to find home that would draw her to the faerie kingdom because she has a home already.
It’s the beginning of a trilogy and Livingston knows how to keep her reader wanting more. I had quite a few questions by the end of the story, which I assume have been addressed in the books following. Although it is possible I missed some things, because when it comes to stories about faeries I have to pay very close attention as it is a world I know little about.
I loved the connection with Shakespeare’s play, and having Puck be the actual Robin Goodfellow was an especially sweet touch. Next time I see Midsummer Night’s Dream I think I’ll be wondering if any faeries are hiding out in the cast.
“‘Home, Fenn?’ Maddox suddenly rounded on him. ‘What is that exactly? Where is it? And when? We’ve none of us homes now but this. This here and this now. We had our homes taken from us.’ He turned to face the rest of the Guard. ‘I’ve seen this girl, and she belongs in this realm. Would you have the Faerie king take her away from everything she has ever known?’ He turned back to Fennrys Wolf. ‘Would you honestly wish our fate upon her?'” – Maddox from Wondrous Strange by Lesley Livingston, page 230