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Forbidden Wings Paperback – 19 Feb 2013
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About the Author
M. C. Arvanitis resides in Oregon. She has a degree in Early Childhood Education. She taught preschool and early elementary for over thirty years until her retirement. She now spends her time writing elementary mid-grade fantasies and Young Adult novels. Her short stories have been published in Skipping Stones Magazine, Totline Teaching Tales (Warren Publishing Co.), and Building Blocks for Bright Beginnings. Along with this book she has published another mid-grade book: The Legend of ELPanda Paws in both e-book and paperback versions. She is now working on Fantasy number three, Pixies of the Ferns - Fernella’s Magic.
Top customer reviews
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about Nadeea and her adventures, because now she can fly she could go to many new places with her new friends Cassie and Alex
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
This story is about a mermaid princess named Nadeea who wants wings after she meets two fairies. So she goes off on a quest to find some. She has to save her parents and the other merfolk from the evil sea lions. The pictures in the book were not that great. I think there should be better pictures. Nadeea, the main character, is a young mermaid. Sadie Squarette is another character but I didn't understand what she was exactly. My favorite part of the story was when they were on the Island of the Damselflies - I wish I could be there because there were lots of pools of water. I felt that the story happened all too fast and I didn't understand who some of the characters were because they were not described well. I liked this book and I think girls who are 9 years old and under would like it. It's really for girls younger than me.
M.C. (Margaret) Arvanitis weaves a delightful tale filled with familiar fantastical creatures such as mermaids, fairies, and selkies as well as others unfamiliar to me such as the Hobbit-like Snergs and the mysterious Sadie Squarette, who can morph into various shapes and sizes. We meet, Princess Nadeea who is smaller than the other mermaids, after her parents as well as the rest of the adult Mers were captured and enslaved by the Sea Lions. After meeting two fairy children, Nadeea dreams of one day being endowed with wings. After, she meets a Snerg who promises to fulfill her dream, Nadeea and her fairy friends embark on a dangerous journey to the Land of the Damselflies. Nadeea must then make a difficult decision - wait for her wings or rescue her parents.
Ms. Arvanitis has a knack for story-telling. Forbidden Wings has all of the elements of a good story: interesting characters based in fantasy and folklore, an engaging plot with many unpredictable twists and turns, and important messages about courage, loyalty, belonging, and friendship. Nadeea is a mermaid Princess who is bullied by the bigger, stronger, more beautiful mer-children. I think many children could relate to her feelings of loneliness and sadness. She longs to look different - she wants to have wings. I think every tween and teen child wishes that they could look different. Nadeea finds the courage within herself to pursue her dreams all the while staying loyal to the friends she encounters. I think, overall, she is a character that young girls could relate to.
There are a variety of other characters that Nadeea befriends along the way including Cassandra and Alex, the two fairies, Sir Cecil the Snerg, Sadie the Squarette, Zasta the selkie, as well as more menacing creatures such as the Trows and the Sea Lions. This makes for a lively and interesting cast of characters. As you read along, you don't know who Nadeea and her traveling companions will run into next.
The plot itself is captivating - the book is a page-turner because there is constant action from when we first Nadeea as an "orphaned" mer-child being mistreated by the other mer-children to the end where ... well, I can't tell you that part! Ms. Arvanitis weaves in important themes about bullying and the impact on the victim, about friendship and loyalty, and about finding the courage to persevere when chasing a dream.
While I enjoyed reading this book, I did have mixed feelings. The story is solid and, on many levels, I can sing its praises. On the other hand, I felt that there was not enough description of the context and the events to really get fully engaged with the story. The story read like a series of events: "A" happened, "B" happened, "C" happened, "D" happened, and so on. I would have liked to read more detailed and descriptive passages. I would classify this book as a short story - my daughter and I both flew through it, but we both felt it was ok only. I think there is so much potential for this book to be expanded into a middle grade novel and I urge the author to consider this because I do think it's a good story.
My bottom line:
I enjoyed reading the book and it has many good qualities. I would recommend this book as a read-aloud book for children who like to be read stories involving characters from fantasy and folklore such as mermaids, fairies, and selkies, and who are aged 5 to 9.
*** Forbidden Wings by M.C. Arvanitis was provided to us free-of-charge by the author exchange for an honest review.***
Having grown up on Disney movies, I think that every little girl at one point or another has wished that she was a mermaid; but never really wondered what mermaids wish for when there's no prince around. I would never have guessed wings.
Nadeea the mermaid is just one of many unique characters in Forbidden Wings but she is by far my favorite. She was born different from other mermaids and as a result was bullied. She desperately wants wings so that she can fly like faeries. I loved that Nadeea didn't wish to be like the mermaids that bullied her, but wished to stand out even more.
She goes on a quest to find someone who can make her wish come true and ends up not only making a lot of new friends but learning some important lessons about who she is and life in general. I really thought that this was a great book for kids and would greatly recommend it.
When her royal parents are torn from her by the invading Sea Lion King, she ends up living with the rest of the refugees, many of whom despise her because of her short stature and regal roots. She spends as much time as she can in the world above the water, where she meets two winged fairies, brother and sister Alex and Cassandra.
Quite by accident, the three of them encounter Sir Cecil, a member of the Snerg clan. Not only does he prove himself innocent of the terrible myths that surround his people, he also grants wishes.
Seeing how gracefully Alex and Cassandra move above the water, and wishing to escape the drudgery and persecution from her own people, Nadeea immediately wishes for wings.
Ah, there’s a problem. This cannot be a wish worked out by any magic of Sir Cecil.
So the group of friends embarks on a mission—one that will not only deliver Nadeea’s wings, but will change the fate of many with whom the adventurers come in contact.
This was a sweet little book. It’s not filled with buttercups-and-daisies prose, but is definitely a great read for those who are not quite into their teen years. There was enough adventure to keep the reader going, and many lessons of friendship and loyalty as well; not to mention the rewards of kindness.
The descriptions and characters were well-developed, and I enjoyed the story immensely. Nice work!