Foul is Fair by Jeffrey Cook & Katherine Perkins – 4 stars
Lots of girls play Fairy Princess when they’re little. Megan O’Reilly had no idea the real thing was like playing chess, guitar, and hockey all at once. Megan had known for a long time that she wasn’t an entirely typical girl. But living with ADHD—and her mother’s obsessions—was a very different thing from finding out she wasn’t entirely human. Somewhere out there, in a completely different world, her father needs help. There’s a conflict, revolving around Faerie seasonal rituals, that could have consequences for humanity—and if Megan’s getting the terminology straight, it sounds like her family aren’t even supposed to be the good guys. As she’s further and further swept up in trying to save her father, Megan may be getting too good at not being human.
Very different in style from Mr. Cook’s Dawn of Steam series, this story takes teenagers on a quest to save the world from the machinations of sidhe faeries. It conjures up both Irish/Celtic legend and Hawaiian mythology, twisting them together seamlessly to produce a coherent setting.
The main characters, Megan and Lani, are charming and clever, and the depiction of someone with ADHD and her medications strikes close to home. Ashling the pixie is adorable. As usual, this author delivers highly believable characters even when they’re outlandish and extraordinary.
Though the main characters are all female, this isn’t a “girly” book. The genders of the characters are barely worth noting as they aren’t dealing with “girl” problems. They don’t spend lots of time talking about boys or makeup, or any of the hundreds of things that might turn off young male readers. Instead, these are carefully complex young women thrown into exciting action and adventure.
I liked this story very much and look forward to the next installment. Recommended for anyone who likes a good Young Adult adventure, especially if you’re into faeries.