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Saffron's Big Plan: And Other Stories Paperback – June 27, 2012
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For Readers who like to be warned about Christian Content, The Derao teaches about forgiveness and quotes directly from the Bible.
About the Author
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In “Saffron’s Big Plan,” Princess Saffron lives in the Wild Lands, a country between the lands of the Horse-Lovers and the Eagle-Lovers. The two countries, while not exactly enemies, seem to take pleasure in feuding with each other over which is the best steed—the Horse or the Eagle. Saffron once tried something to help stop the feuding, but it didn’t work, so now, with the help of a magnolia tree, a dandelion plant and the cheerful King Quacksley, Saffron prepares to put her Big Plan into action and bring peace to her neighbors.
“Tears, Frogs and Laughter” tells the story of Princess Orianna, who is under a curse that causes her to sob uncontrollably by day and laugh hysterically by night. Meanwhile, the youngest son of a tailor—Daniel by name—comes upon the weeping princess and instantly falls in love with her. While following her through the woods to discover why she changes suddenly from sorrow to raucous laughter, Daniel suddenly finds himself changed into a frog, and his pet frog into a little boy, by a blundering fairy named Frellen…who has also turned herself an her friend Rinola into frogs while trying to make parsley.
Caveats: The pet frog, when turned into a boy, is described as being “rather bare” at first—although Orianna quickly throws her cloak over him—and is depicted eating bugs (non-graphic). Also, Princess Orianna is described as having mucus running down her face while she is crying.
“The Derao” centers on Matthew 6:14-15, “For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you forgive not their trespasses, neither will your heavenly Father forgive your trespasses.”
Princess Tabitha is angry with Lukas, the keeper of her pet lizard’s cage, who has been accused of letting the lizard out into the wild, where it will quickly grow into a dragon-like beast known as the Derao. Lukas is bitter because he is innocent of the crime, yet forced to take a punishment that someone else deserves: Sit atop the Mountain of High—where the Derao now lives—and become its first victim.
Both need to obey the Scripture and lay aside their anger…and to implement a daring plan in order to save the Kingdom of Prosperous from destruction by the Derao.
The fourth and final tale in this collection, “The Prior Quest,” gives us a bit of backstory for a character introduced in Miss Ardnek’s “Sew, it’s a Quest”—Push au Kim by name. When Push, as a youth, receives kind treatment from a miller, he vows to return the favor someday…only by the time he finds out the miller’s whereabouts years later, the miller is dead. So Push offers to help one of the miller’s three sons instead, if they will pay to have the bundle of exotic skins he carries made into clothes for him. The older two scoff at this, but the youngest readily agrees…and soon finds himself on an exciting—and at times bewildering—adventure involving Push’s taking wild game to the king of the next country, dealing with the evil Duke O’Gair and stealing the lad’s clothes while he (the miller’s son) bathes in a nearby lake!
The writing style of these four short stories is simple and easy to read—perfect for younger readers aged 8-12—or for older to adult readers with a love of fairytales—in search of clean light reading.