This was another book from my Birthday and I laughed a lot while reading because of my idiocy at not realising what Queen they were talking about.
Synopsis (as appears on back of book) is as follows:
Orphan Magpie can’t believe her eyes when she sees a boy swept off his feet by a kite…or something that twists and dances in the wind. She goes to his rescue only to find herself dangling in the sky. The world looks so different from on high and suddenly Magpie knows what she wants – to be the first to fly in a balloon above the King and Queen of France.
Ability to read – I had no issue in reading this. The language was simple and the details and descriptions helped me to construct an image of what was happening. The only thing that disrupted my ability to read was my own idiocy in regards to certain elements. Despite the synopsis and detailed first few chapters, I still forgot that they were trying to make a balloon – not a plane – that they were in France – not America – and with King and Queen were being referred to. Disregarding me being stupid, there was no issue when it came to understanding what was happening.
Characterisation – I thought Magpie was a particularly thrilling character in terms of how she managed to survive out in the open world by herself and how she managed to find a space for herself and better her station. I also felt that she was a character with a lot of compassion. She was a character who was used to the worst of society and living conditions and through the course of the story we see her learning to accept people around her and the idea of earning a coin or two gets replaced with the need to make and save friends.
Visualisation – Was slightly marred at the beginning because I couldn’t make out what era the story was taking place in but once I got into the swing of things – and stopped being stupid – I could clearly visualise what was going on with and around the characters and was able to imagine something accordingly.
Uniqueness – Well I have never read a book regarding the invention of a balloon before, so it was completely unique in that respect. I thought this book was really fun and light but also told of the consequences of jobs taken on without information and the price of being involved in criminal activity.
I loved this book. I thought it was very imaginative and interesting. Emma Carroll is fast becoming a favourite author of mine.