So, you are having a bad day. Or a bad week. Maybe even a bad month.
If you are having a bad year – sorry, that. The year is nowhere near finished, yet. Things can get better?
While you wait (or to help stave off the bad day blues), there is always The Legend of the Engineer: The Legends and Adventures of Industralia #2, by Lori Alden Holuta. This perfectly packaged story connects to the world of Industralia (first presented in The Steamkettle Kids Save The Day – see last week’s post) and to characters first presented in The Flight to Brassbright (which has a review on this site yet to come). Miss Holuta gives to her readers a charming tale of the holidays – gone right. No real mishaps. There is a lot of love between all the characters. Were I to try and pinpoint a focus or ‘main story’ in this weaving in and out of the lives of the five or so characters the story presents over thirty pages (not counting the Engineer or the Tikkerbots or any of the kids except Margaret) is Margaret (for me).
This is a holiday story – and the gem of it all is the anticipation that the children seem to have waiting and hoping for the Engineer. Margaret captures this feeling of hope perfectly. When she is present, the story works for me.
She’s not the only character, though, and I can’t feel right in calling Margaret the main character. There are none (I don’t think). Like its predecessor, this is a beautiful and poignant story fit for all ages. It is also short. The writing brings to mind many of the stories I loved as a kid – especially ones written (yet again) by Robert Newton Peck. Still, for all its charm, I wish Miss Holuta had focused a bit more on one character – or had lengthened the end to show (more than tell) the truth behind the ‘Legend.’ I would have paid more for this happily – especially as nicely as she writes.
Still, it was a nice little story – and it leaves me looking forward to reading (and reviewing) A Life Invented next week.