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The Journal of the Lincoln Heights Literary Society
Miscellanea and Ephemeron

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05/25/2006 Archived Entry: "Graphic novel review: Castle Waiting"

Castle Waiting
By Linda Medley
Published by Fantagraphics

Review by Lynn Loper

If they'd had fairy tales like Linda Medley's 'Castle Waiting' when I was little, I would have read fairy tales.

This is a charming book. The illustrations are detailed and full of character and personality, and the story segues gracefully from a slightly retold 'Sleeping Beauty' to her castle's next incarnations as a refuge and a very atypical convent. There's a green baby whose mother thinks casually that it has its father's looks, but thank heaven not his horns, laid in a cast-iron cradle, safe from his mother's villainous husband. The castle's seneschal has a beak. The knight-errant is Sir Destrier, and he's a horse -- a nice bipedal horse. There are good witches and evil witches, none so evil they don't have some redeeming qualities, good gremlins and bad ones, and the story winds up with an order of bearded-lady nuns.

If the book has a theme, it's kindness: doing everything you can for those around you, even if you have little to do with. Books like this make it seem so easy, and reading it is like spending a few hours in a better world. I like to spend my time like that, and I recommend this book to anybody who wants to spend a few hours there. Me, I'm off to find more work by Linda Medley.

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