#DiscoverWP, bilingualism, early readers, fairies, Fairy Tales, French, Grade Two, kindergarten, Lili Barouf
Yes! Celebrate! You have found it! Vous l’avez trouvé!*
This is THE GREATEST Lili Barouf Fan Page!
This claim is based on the fact that, based on a Google Search today, I think it is the ONLY Lili Barouf Fan Page (en anglais ou en français). I think it may also be the only page with anything about her other than ways to simply buy all the books about her amazing adventures.
Ici la princesse Lili:
And she’s amazing.
She is the star of a Bayard Poche series of early French readers that my 7-year-old and 4-year-old daughters discovered two weeks ago.
They ADORE them.
And I adore her because, well, did I mention she’s amazing?
I also love her because she isn’t a member of the Winx Club, which is the only other thing my 7-year-old has shown any interest in reading.
So the fact that she really likes these books?
And the fact that I find them fun to read too?
Yes. I am full on mom-crushin’ on Lili.
The books are fun, clever and VERY readable.
And there are TONS of them in two different formats: short cartoon-style and slightly longer early readers.
My girls go to French school (dad’s French, I’m English) so they’re learning to read in French first, not English.
Given this is the first French series my eldest has shown any interest in, I dutifully went online to find out more about la p’tite princesse.
You know, I thought I might surf a wiki dedicated to her. Or find the game and activity spin-off page associated with the book series.
Or maybe locate the TV show that was recently syndicated based on the books. If there was no show, maybe I’d find some fan-made stop-motion YouTube videos done with the dolls which would clearly have been mass-produced to support the series …
Or, if not that, maybe a Wikipedia page? Or a few book reviews? Or a random blog post? Or an article? Or maybe someone with some fan-based artwork dedicated to her…
Apparently Lili’s no Fancy Nancy or Lemony Snicket.
So I decided this little French Princesse deserved some webby love.
First, to help situate yourselves, here’s her world:
This photo’s been featured at the beginning of each book we’ve read so far, so my girls and I can take a moment to immerse ourselves in Lili’s world. There’s the big city off in the distance with her school, then the palais de Château-dingue where she lives, just in front of La forêt enchantée, where she is forbidden to go.
Suffice to say she’s spent most of the first four books we’ve read hanging out in the enchanted forest getting into all sorts of mischief.
She has a little pet dragonneau (baby dragon) named Ploc, who is just SUPER CUTE (you need to say that with the joyful squeal of my 4-year-old).
Then there’s Boris, the poor palace servant who spends forever trying to track her down…
Her parents, who pitch up once in a while when they serve plot purpose, or to remind us that they are the King and Queen of whatever kingdom this is so Lili’s a princess…
Some good friends, who we haven’t met yet, but I’m sure pitch up in the 60 odd books we haven’t read yet…
And lastly, there’s the awesome Valentine, Lili’s marraine-fée (fairy godmother), who Lili can reach via her cell phone when she’s in a pinch. Valentine will then cast a spell and make Lili invisible, or super strong, or give her magic powers, or whatever until she can get out of whatever scrape she and Ploc find themselves in.
So far in our reading, Lili has defeated witches, escaped wolves and survived a booster shot at the doctor’s office. My daughters are convinced she can do anything! They are having fun trying to guess what spell Valentine will cast to help her out of whatever predicament she’s in.
And they are excited about bedtime reading in French that doesn’t include translations of (mind-numbing and repetitive) books based on a syndicated television show about super-skinny fairies (!!!!)
Despite the complete absence of Lili info online, I did manage to find some info when I looked up the author and illustrator. Check out that journalism degree coming in handy!
Lili is written by Arnaud Alméras, who was born in Paris in 1967 and still lives there. He’s an editor for J’aime lire and also writes Calamity Mamie – which I will go find based on the name alone.
Lili is illustrated by Frédéric Benaglia, who does really fun illustrations for a number of children’s books (you should check out his blog at the link from his name). Born in 1974, he attended l’École Estienne (an art school in Paris), and is currently the Art Director for Bayard Presse.
But getting back to Lili and my girls, next up we’re going to read all about Valentine, Lili as a NINJA, and how she defeats an OGRE.
Seriously, there should be a movie.
Am I right?
Join my nation Lili love.
Avoid the rush.
*site web is masculine in French, right? I think I did the accord correctly. Let me know if I’m wrong.