TITLE: PRODIGAL MAGGIE
GENRE: YA contemporary fantasy
Crazy Aunt Patti. Maggie loved her, but Patti was as superstitious as they came.
Patti set a saucer of milk out every night to appease the local pixie population, kept a pair of metal tongs above her daughter's cradle to ward off supernatural baby snatchers, and was forever on the hunt for a river rock with a natural hole in it, which she claimed, when looked through, would allow her to see the wee creatures for what they really were.
Maggie's mom said Patti did it to play up the 'quaint Irish folk' thing; that Patti gave the Irish a bad name and played into American stereotypes; that she reveled in the attention that came with being the wacky one in the family, always clinging to the old ways.
But Maggie liked Patti's stories. When she was really mad at her parents or her sister, she daydreamed about living with Aunt Patti and Uncle Finn, Maeve and Liam and Cillian and Aoife, in Ballyshee, County Mayo, Ireland.
The tiny village was romantic, gothic, fantastical--opposite in every possible way to Maggie's average, lawyer's-daughter life. She imagined it as a lush, picturesque place where it rained as often as it shined. Where life was simple. Where she might have a cheerful mother and a present father and siblings that adored her. Green grass on the other side of the pond.
Ballyshee, where Crazy Aunt Patti wasn't so crazy after all.