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My son is a very eclectic reader. I like that he picks things based on whether he fancies giving them a go rather than because something is a boy or girl oriented book. It means he has a much broader knowledge base and he is also not afraid to stick up for books he likes whether they are considered to be for boys or for girls. Long may it last.

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Usually I am quite happy with his choices, but the last book he brought home as a reading book for school was one of the dreaded Daisy Meadows Rainbow Fairy books. I say dreaded, because my middle daughter, Tallulah, went through a phase of loving these books and we had literally hundreds of the things all over the house. I learned to hate them. Not just because they were so prolific, but because they were unutterable trash, and that is not a phrase I use lightly. I would have preferred her to read Horrid Henry, and I hate him too.

There are several things about the Daisy Meadows Rainbow Fairy series that annoy me. Firstly there is no such person as Daisy Meadows. Daisy Meadows is several people and an evil robot churning out the same formulaic junk.

Secondly these stories are incredibly poor quality. The plot lines are weak, the characters are negligible and the vocabulary is dull.

Thirdly, they are the same from book to book. Once you’ve read one, you’ve read all three trillion. Only the names have been changed to protect the innocent.

As a champion of reading I feel that I ought to be unreservedly praiseful of children who read, and particularly children who read voraciously, but it is really difficult when the children who read voraciously read Rainbow Fairies. Which they do, in droves.

Oscar brought home Scarlett the Garnet Fairy, which is number 23 in the series. The series usually run in sets. This set is about a bunch of fairies named after precious stones who get their magical power from the stones. The stones have gone missing from Fairy Land and the king and queen of fairyland, Oberon and Titania, have enlisted the help of two small girls, Rachel and Kirsty, to track down the jewels, which the evil Jack Frost has hidden somewhere on earth.

In this story, the garnet that the girls are looking for is responsible for things shrinking and growing. As the magic of the stone waxes and wanes, things near Rachel and Kirsty grow and shrink accordingly. Can they restore the garnet to Scarlett before Jack Frost’s henchmen, the evil goblins, get it?

I’ll give you three guesses.

My fear was that my son would fall head over heels in love with these books and make me sit through all seven million of them. Luckily he was as bored as I was by the whole book and said that he was disappointed as the synopsis made it sound exciting, but when he actually read it it was very silly.

I love him. I do not love the book.

If you must read them, they are totally a girl thing. My son is the only boy I’ve ever known who would willingly try them. They are suitable for girls from six to as old as they can bear them. There are now a series of Easy Reader Rainbow Fairy books to hook children in earlier. These do make good reading scheme books as they are incredibly popular and will spur small girls on to get on to the later series like nothing else will.

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