In childhood all things are possible. Belief and imagination are strong, so when presented with seemingly outlandish situations and stories, it’s easy to accept them as truth. Rewards and Fairies by Rudyard Kipling offers numerous fantastic stories as told to two children.
In their free time adventures, Dan and Una come across their old friend Puck, a fairy, and slowly remember the adventures they had the last time they met with Puck, who had removed that time from their memories to keep the fairy world safely secret. Encountering new stories as they come across people who all happen to know Puck, Dan and Una learn some new things to either accept as is or try to place in the context of their own lives.
An interesting collection of short stories and poems, this book offers both entertainment and an exploration of some darker, deeper themes. The language was beautifully crafted -and I’d expect nothing less from Kipling – and the historical events and stories that these tales pulled from were familiar enough to provide context but unique enough to stand alone as something vaguely new. Having not read the predecessor to this book, I didn’t feel as if I was missing any key aspects to understand (although the footnotes did suggest reading the other book for clarification of certain stories), but reading it might offer a better comprehension of if this volume offers growth upon what was previously presented.
Overall, I’d give it a 3 out of 5 stars.