When I received this gorgeous book in the post from Flying Eye Books, ‘ Imelda & the Goblin King’ by Briony May Smith, I was truly thrilled. I had heard so many lovely things about this and seen a few sneak peaks and it truly lived up to my expectations. This is a first picture book from Briony May Smith and it is a total treat from start to finish.
It tells the tale of a girl called Imelda who lives next to a wood full of fairies, ‘whispering trees and enchanted groves,’ She spends her day playing with these magical folk and learning the secrets of the forest.
But then one day a nasty creature the Goblin King appears who stomps around terrifying all the fairy folk with his meanness and angriness . The fairy queen hopes that by being nice to the Goblin King then he would be kind back to them and she invites him to the fairy solstice. Unfortunately her plan backfires when he gobbles up all the feast to himself and when the Queen tries to challenge him he kidnaps her and locks her away in a cage.
The Goblin King refuses to listen to the pleas of the fairies to let there Queen go free so they turn to Imelda to help them rescue her. Imelda comes up with a cunning plan and bakes a special pie. She gives the King one last chance for redemption, if he shares the pie he will be fine but if he is greedy and eats it all he will pay the price and be punished.
However the Goblin King can’t contain his greediness and eats the pie in one big gulp. He is then turned into a worm and Imelda is triumphant as will no longer be able to frighten or bully anyone else in the forest again. The Goblins are all delighted to be free from their mean ruler and make Imelda their Queen.
This story is delightful, the Fairy Queen is wise and kind, the Goblin King is perfectly menacing and Imelda makes for a feisty heroine. Every page in this book is totally exquisite and full of intricate details, even the tiniest of fairy folk is drawn with great attention. You find yourself totally drawn into this world and could spend hours appreciating all the stunning illustrations. I think Briony May Smith is immensely talented and I look forward to enjoying more of her work in the future.
If you would like to learn how to draw fairies like Briony May Smith you can check out this great link on The Book Sniffer’s blog: