I have never had much of an imagination. At least I don't think I have. In my childhood, I do not recall pretending much of anything. Mud pies were mud pies, certainly not pretend chocolate cream pies. When my sons were little, it was my mom who effortlessly pretended to be Princess Leia in their Star Wars adventures. As a librarian, I fill requests all the time for fantasy novels, books about mermaids, books with mythical creatures, books that feature fairies. I read these books to be a credible and informed resource for readers, but I still cannot engage in the imaginative part much.
It was with hesitation, then, that I read Mary Losure's new book The Fairy Ring or Elsie and Frances Fool the World. It is a wonderful story about two cousins in England who take photographs of fairies. Though Frances sees little gnome-like men in the woods, Elsie beautifully illustrates paper fairies that the two girls prop up among the foliage. Their parents silently accept their stories and photographs. When the Theosophical Society requests the information and images, the girls admit the truth, but they uphold their stories. The entire scenario ensnares even Sir Arthur Conan Doyle!