Stockyard Park in Brisbane 2003.
The garden pergola
The pergola, illustrated by Grace Chen in Forever Fairies,
( p.162), is a meeting place for the family and where happy memories are created. It is featured throughout the future series of books.
The little arched bridge
'Don't let the calm tranquility of the creek fool you,' he said. Words spoken by Grandpa when crossing an ancient arched bridge. p. 146
The author finds surprises around every turn when exercising her dog.
A council footbridge becomes a little arched bridge in Forever Fairies.
Grace's illustration is on page 146.
About the book
Before it made it into the book, the guardian of the doorway, better known as the whispering branch, was first discovered by the author in amongst the leaf litter.
He felt something gentle on his cheek - not like the cold wind blowing past but like a puff of warm breath when someone speaks. p. 102
See the whispering branch drawn by the illustrator - Grace Chen. p. 103
Inspiration for the first book.
Forever Fairies is the story of nine-year-old twins, Luka and Leandra who find an orphaned new-born fairy at the bottom of their grandparents’ garden. They make it their mission to nurture and take care of her, and return her to the world in which she belongs.
The twins find a fairy folklore book and discover hand-written notes and maps, hidden inside the front cover, penned by their missing grandfather. The manual’s information helps them solve the problem of caring for the fairy and directs them to the Fairy Kingdom entrance.
The appearance of Granwick the mischievous fairy, born at the same time as Little Fairy and driven by revenge, generates the need, not only for magical intervention but also courage, problem-solving and empathy when relating to friends and those who are not so friendly. The supernatural elements in the story have clearly defined rules and limitations and act in the same way that particular skills and talents work in the human world. Supernatural intervention is not relied on entirely to solve problems.
Luka and Leandra demonstrate abilities to be both logical and imaginative thinkers. The little fairy learns about consequences, accepts responsibility for her actions, and discovers that she is both a fairy and a princess through the help of her friends. The three develop a deep and meaningful life-long bond. The little fairy, Princess Aliya, is to learn all that she can about her fairy-kin and farewell her human-family, with a promise to one day reunite. Luka and Leandra discover something of their histories with the fairies linked to their missing grandfather. They return home, pledging to one day, go back and locate him.