Trouble at the Valentine Factory

Laurel Decher
Bumpity Boulevard Press (2022)
ISBN: 9783949220043
Reviewed by Rachel Dehning for Reader Views (07/2022)

“Trouble at the Valentine Factory” is whimsical, airy, nostalgic, and fun, while dark and troublesome as well. The story is in the “Seven Kingdoms” series of fairy tales by Laurel Decher featuring the characters Princess Saffy and Prince Magellan.

These royals are sent on a mission by their fairy godparents to find and return missing cupids who have escaped from the Fairy Kingdom, much too close to Valentine’s Day. To top it off, the bees in each kingdom who supply the scrumptious honey to the citizens are acting strange, if they can even be found! The Rose Monday parade on Valentine’s Day is quickly approaching, and if the cupids are still hanging around, that spells bad news. Trouble is also brewing in the Blackfly Kingdom with Queen Ash and King Schwartz; it’s in the hands of Saffy and Magellan, with the help of Prince Nero and Magellan’s Saffron dragon, to end Queen Ash’s evil schemes that could ruin the Rose Monday parade and the rest of people’s lives forever!

Reading through “Trouble at the Valentine Factory” made me feel young and carefree. It is a fairy tale that I wish I had heard when I was a child; there is mystery, deception, camaraderie, and competition. I got vibes of random animated movies and television shows, and the concept of the royalty getting their special and secret gift from their fairy godparent reminded me of the three fairies in “Sleeping Beauty.” It’s easy to get caught up in the reality of the world we live in, so to have the escape of mentally traveling to the seven kingdoms and learning more about the beloved characters is a welcomed and needed distraction. The fairy gifts are unique both in themselves and to whom they were gifted, and necessary to the storyline.

Decher’s writing flows smoothly and effortlessly, which allows each page to turn much more quickly at times than I’d like. The story is complete and draws the reader into the adventures of the young heroes. Action, adventure, and pure imagination run the show. I have not read the three previous books, but now I know they will be ones worth reading. I didn’t struggle with the story or characters, with this being my initial introduction to them. Readers who are fans of fantasy, dragons, competition, and good versus evil will love this story, regardless of age.

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