Fee, Fi, Fo, Grow!: The Real Magic of the Beans
Lois Wickstrom
Gripper Products (2020)
ISBN 9780916176495
Reviewed by Lydia Dehning (age 6) for Reader Views Kids (6/20)

“Fee, Fi, Fo, Grow!: The Real Magic of the Beans” by Lois Wickstrom is the story of Jack and the Beanstalk, but with some different characters. This story doesn’t have Jack, but Jacqueline and her mother. Jacqueline and her mother are poor and are needing some money to buy seeds to plant in their garden to grow into food for them to eat.

Jacqueline’s mother sends her with their cow, Bessie, to sell for money. While she’s walking with Bessie, Jacqueline meets an old man who says that he’ll give her three big magic beans for Bessie. Jacqueline ends up giving the man her cow, but then her mother is sad when she sees what she comes home with. The seeds get thrown out the window and grow into a really big beanstalk by the morning! Jacqueline climbs up and meets the Giant’s wife, who feeds her breakfast. The wife’s husband comes home and wants to eat Jacqueline, but the wife hides her and helps her get home safely. The wife also helps Jacqueline to become rich with their goose who lays golden eggs.

I like how this story is close to the same as the original story, but also different in many ways. Also, a girl, I like reading about girl main characters- both Jacqueline and the Giant’s wife. My family is also doing a garden in our yard, so it is fun to read about other people doing a garden, too. I like the pictures in the book because they are fun to look at and they help show what’s happening in the story. I think that kids of any age will like this story.

A Note from Mom: I believe that any child will enjoy this book, too. Even if you’ve heard the original story many times, this is a fresh take on it and will allow the reader to exercise their brains while they imagine the amusing things that are happening. For feminists, they should appreciate that the author changed the characters to female, and how the story shows how females problem-solve and fix their mistakes. Overall, this is a fun and easy read. 

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