by Bruce Graw
The Faerie of Central Park is a light urban fantasy, a gentle romance and a clash of assumptions. It opens with the one remaining genius loci of Central Park, Tilly, caring for the nature in the park, which she calls the Land. She is intrigued by humans, but is simultaneously afraid of them, and their “magic” is impossible for her to understand.
Then we meet Dave, a first year computer science student at Columbia University who really does not know what to do with his life. Tilly makes the mistake of hitching a ride on a kite to get a better view and the kite string breaks, hurling her so far from the Land that she wonders if she will ever make it back. She falls insensible, with a broken wing, onto the windshield of Dave’s car. He thinks she’s a high-quality doll he can use to impress a girl, he takes her home – only to find out that she’s alive.
What would you do with a live fairy in your dorm room?
Dave’s a nice guy, and once Tilly gets over her fear of him they end up roommates of a sort while she heals. The clash of cultures is funny. For example, the scene where they are sharing tacos at his table is hilarious, and her assumptions about human “magic” are wry and well-done. The moment when they can finally understand each other’s speech is amazing.
But Dave’s online search for ways to help his new guest attract a paranormal bounty hunter. And his best friend simultaneously sees dollar signs dancing in his eyes if he turns the fairy in, while he is worried about Dave coming under some sort of spell.
I got a little bored and skimmed when the fairy started telling the stories of her race’s shared oral history, but they were all necessary for the plot to move forward.
The book was extremely well edited. Even though the back cover of the paperback had a comic sans font, I think I can forgive that as I really enjoyed the story. If you’re looking for a paranormal romance that does not belong in the porn rack, this is for you.