Written by: Laini Taylor
For parents of independent readers, we provide a set of questions that should give you insight into what your child is reading and help you engage him/her in meaningful conversations about literature. We recommend using the questions provided here as a springboard for deeper conversation about Fairies of Dreamdark: Blackbringer and what your child takes away from the book. Enjoy!
Magpie Windwitch isn't your average fairy. Fairies like to live a peaceful and quiet existence in Dreamdark, but Magpie would much rather spend her time hunting down escaped devils with her band of crows. This pastime of hers comes in handy when she discovers that the Blackbringer, an ancient force of evil, has come back into her world. It is now her job to go deep into the forest of Dreamdark and stop the Blackbringer from destroying her world.
Create a K-W-L Chart and have your child fill in the first two columns with information that s/he knows and wants to find out about the story. S/he can fill in the last column, "What I Learned", once s/he has finished the story.
What I Know
After reading the description on the back cover, have him/her write about what s/he already knows about the story. What other stories has s/he read or seen that feature fairies? What are some characteristics of those fairies?
What I Want to Know
Include questions like, "How will the fairies in this story be the same as/different from the ones that I've previously read about? How will Magpie defeat the Blackbringer?"
Maintain a Vocabulary Journal
Encourage your child to stop when s/he gets to an unfamiliar word. See if s/he can discover its meaning by using context clues like prefixes and suffixes as well as the words surrounding it. Be sure to keep a “Vocabulary Journal” nearby when reading so that your child can write down new words, that s/he has either already defined or wishes to look up in the dictionary.
- What genre does this story fall under? What are the common characteristics of this genre? What lesson can be learned from this story?
- Compare and contrast yourself to Magpie Windwitch. What do you think Magpie's best and/or worst qualities? How do these qualities help or hinder her on her journey?
- Give a detailed description of Dreamdark. Are there any elements of this setting that make you think of someplace else? Would you want to visit Dreamdark? Why or why not?
- Who is Djinn King and what is his role in the creation story told in this book? How is the creation story significant to Magpie's quest?
- How does Magpie conquer the Blackbringer?
- What do you think will happen in the next book in this series? Were there any loose ends that you think could be addressed in the next installment? Write the general plot line and then try your hand at writing the first few pages of the story. Try to use some of the words in your vocabulary journal in your story, and be sure that you understand their meaning and use them properly.