From School Library Journal
Grade 5-8–Sherman's tongue is firmly and delightfully in cheek in this contemporary fantasy that blends children's literature and pop culture in an effervescent witch's brew with a strong scent of edgy attitude. Neef, the mortal changeling first introduced in the author's short story, CATNYP (The Faery Reel
, Viking, 2004), lives in New York Between, a parallel Manhattan of elves, fairies, demons, vampires, and other spirits. Stolen by fairies who replaced her with one of their own, she is protected by her fairy godmother, Astris, a white rat. With a nod to Cinderella, Neef sneaks out to the annual Solstice Dance in Central Park, breaking a rule and losing the protection of the Green Lady, the Genius of Central Park. Neef, as hip as any contemporary 12-year-old New Yorker, bargains with the Green Lady. If the changeling successfully accomplishes three tasks, she won't be thrown out of the park or have the dangerous spirits of the Wild Hunt after her. At the annual Eloise Awards for the Most Spoiled Child, Neef runs into her fairy changeling counterpart, who helps with the quest. The novel is delightfully full of allusions to children's books (the Water Rat and Stuart Little live in Central Park), fairy-tale motifs, and contemporary culture (the Green Lady talks as tough as a character on The Sopranos
). Readers will love the feisty, irrepressibly optimistic Neef, delight in the sheer cleverness of the story, and never look at New York in the same way again.–Connie Tyrrell Burns, Mahoney Middle School, South Portland, ME
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Readers will love the feisty, irrepressibly optimistic Neef. ùSchool Library Journal
Plenty of urban hipness and a girl hero who thinks on her feet! ùTamora Pierce