cover image Jinnie Ghost

Jinnie Ghost

Berlie Doherty, , illus. by Jane Ray. . Frances Lincoln, $16.95 (40pp) ISBN 978-1-84507-292-6

What dreams may come when the moon is full? Only Doherty (Granny Was a Buffer Girl ; Fairy Tales ) and her title character know for sure in this evocative, gently eerie picture-book fantasy. When the moon is "round as apples," a girlish figure "thin as the wind,/ her hair as white as the feathers of owls," slips through the night air and into bedrooms, delivering dreams to children. Charlotte dreams of dancing dolls and toys; Tommy dreams of riding a unicorn to the end of the world. But quick and quiet as she comes, Jinnie Ghost is gone by morning light, leaving children brushing sleep from their eyes. Doherty offers an intriguing nighttime subject and some elegant poetic imagery, but the uneven rhythms of her text, including a few lines of rhyming verse, make this a somewhat clunky outing. Ray's (The Happy Prince ; Fairy Tales ) earth- and jewel-toned mixed-media compositions, however, work a bit of magic. The white, transparent Jinnie sweeps over moonlit streets and rooftops delivering fantastic creatures and scenery to youngsters' dreamscapes. Elements of shadow, starglow and silhouette throughout sustain a predominantly hushed tone. Ages 5-9. (Oct.)