Fairy Houses and Beyond!” by Barry and Tracy Kane proves that Fairy Houses are as varied as a child’s imagination and as limitless as the wonders of nature. The latest release in the popular children’s book series, “Fairy Houses and Beyond!” takes readers on a magical pictorial tour of the evolving world of fairy house neighborhoods, coastal communities, intricate interiors and even a fairy house spa.
Award-winning author and illustrator, Tracy Kane was inspired by fairy houses when she discovered these small dwellings hidden in the woods on a coastal island in Maine. A New England tradition that dates back for generations, these whimsical abodes are built from twigs, bark, leaves, stone, feathers, seashells and other natural materials.
Tracy Kane, a gifted artist and talented story-teller, said that her imagination soared when she spotted these fairy houses tucked amongst tree roots and rocks along the wooded path. “What if I were to write and illustrate a book about building fairy houses?” she wrote. “The story could introduce this delightful activity to children everywhere. What a fun way to appreciate nature’s wonders!”
This inspiration soon gave rise to her first book, “Fairy Houses”, including illustrations and instructions for building fairy dwellings. The award-winning series today includes five children’s books and one DVD. This unique series takes a classic fairy theme and gently weaves true lifelong values throughout.
“Fairy Houses and Beyond!” is the second pictorial tour co-authored by Tracy and her husband, Barry Kane. Using photographs of actual fairy houses throughout the country, this latest release shows what can be done with a little creativity and the natural materials that surround us. Tracy writes about the experience of building fairy houses:
“It is a way to explore and participate in the wonder of nature; to bring people closer together as they collaborate in an activity with nature; to provide an opportunity for children of all ages to create, invent and learn.”
She explains that building fairy houses encourages children to explore the outdoors and inspires awareness of the natural environment. “In an era when children are spending too much time indoors watching TV, playing computer and video games, building fairy houses is an activity that reconnects kids with nature. It is a fun remedy for nature deficit disorder” she said. “A fairy house can be simple or elaborate, colorful or camouflaged, impromptu or intricately designed. The only rule is that no living thing is harmed – or the fairies won’t come.”
Building Villages, Castles and Spas:
The Fairy Houses Series? of books and video has sparked a nationwide craze. “Fairy Houses and Beyond!” offers another source of unique inspiration for the growing number of fairy house enthusiasts. It includes photographs of houses in different environments – from mountains, meadows and beaches to a tropical paradise and an icy tundra. The book illustrates how these magical abodes are evolving into fairy neighborhoods and communities including a coastal village, a frontier outpost and even a medieval fortress complete with its own castle. Fairies even enjoy the arts in an opera box and at a cabaret dinner theater. They play musical instruments, enjoy painting and crafts – all created with natural materials found right outside your door.
Particularly noteworthy are the photographs of fairy house interiors with everything from miniature furniture to fireplaces crafted to make fairy dwellers comfortable. Barry Kane writes about his experience photographing these fanciful creations:
“As I crouch under the branches of a tree, I am rewarded with a fairy-eye view. I chuckle and wonder at the whimsical touches of the interiors, some clearly taking hours to design and construct?.I realize there is no limit to the exciting possibilities.”
The fairy houses building craze has inspired a host of community activities and events ranging from fairy houses tours to plays and even ballets. It has become a year-round activity, helping to bond families and friends across the generations.
The Fairy Houses Series? has received six prestigious awards and has been critically acclaimed as a “must-have for children’s collections.” Along with the other books in the series, “Fairy Houses and Beyond!” is available directly from Light-Beams Publishing, Ingram, Baker & Taylor, New Leaf, BWI, Follett and other distributors.