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Literature / The Wizard, The Witch, and Two Girls from Jersey

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The ancient land of Galma is in trouble. The Queen of Twilight has two magic orbs that shroud the land in perpetual, well, twilight and she's after the third to make it perpetual night. Only Princess Arabelle can defeat her and save Galma for she is the One whom the prophecies talk about.

Unfortunately, there was a little mishap involving two girls, Heather Simms and Veronica Lopez, and Princess Arabelle is sort of out of commission. Forever.

Heather and Veronica were just fighting over a book, The Queen of Twilight, at a bookstore when suddenly they were inside the book. Now, the entire plot has gone Off the Rails and Veronica has to struggle to get it back, while Heather is mistaken for Arabelle and proceeds to complain about everything and everyone.

Lisa Papademetriou wrote this hilarious Affectionate Parody of J. R. R. Tolkien and other fantasy books. It is a must read.

The Wizard, The Witch, and Two Girls from Jersey contains examples of:

  • Action Girl: Veronica, who in her first few minutes of being in Galma breaks the Fragile Hag's arm off. After Veronica gets a crossbow, she's even more awesome.
  • Affectionate Parody: It's very, very obvious that Lisa Papademetriou loves fantasy novels. And making fun of them.
  • Alpha Bitch: Heather Simms, then subverted and thrown away when you see how messed up she is emotionally and mentally.
  • Always Chaotic Evil: Subverted, the Ookies were bewitched into serving the Queen of Twilight, but once she's dead, they're actually pretty okay.
  • Awesome Moment of Crowning: In the end, after the Twilight Queen is killed, Heather decides to stay behind and help Galma get back to its glory days by being its Queen. Oh and introducing Spa Caves.
  • Big Bad: The Queen of Twilight.
  • The Cavalry: The elves at the end, as well as Chattergee's talking animal and animate shrubbery "army"
  • Chekhov's Boomerang: In the beginning of the novel, Heather steals a small snowglobe. It happens to bear a certain resemblance to the Orb of Neftalion, which comes in handy.
  • The Chosen One: Subverted and then stomped on.
  • Collapsing Lair: Lampshaded with the Fragile Hag's tower.
  • Crystal Ball: The Orb of Neftalion, which the One can use to see the future.
  • Disney Death: Double subverted. When Strathorn apparently dies, Veronica insists that it can't be true, but after some time passes she admits it must be and moves along with the rest of the group. By the end of the book it turns out she was right, and she lampshades it, announcing, "I knew it was a psych-out!"
  • The Dragon: Two of them: the Queen's two sisters, the Duchess of Breakable Objects (or the Fragile Hag) and the Countess of Uncomfortable Humidity (or the Drizzly Witch).
  • Evil Sorcerer: The Queen and her two sisters.
  • Evil Tower of Ominousness: The Fragile Hag lives in one.
  • Expy: Strathorn for Gandalf (wizard mentor), Doggett for Samwise (cook and good friend), and, strangely, Chattergee for Reepicheep (although more of a lech). Also, the Galag Nur [Shadowshriekers] for the Nazgûl [Ringwraiths]. Likewise, the Queen of Twilight and her sisters are counterparts for the White Witch Jadis and the Wicked Witches of Oz.
  • Genre Savvy: Veronica loves fantasy novels, especially The Queen of Twilight, so once she ends up in the book she not only recognizes the tropes but also the characters and locations. Unfortunately, the Butterfly of Doom means this knowledge isn't always helpful.
  • Giant Flyer: The Galag Nur ride giant ravens (as expies of the Fell Beasts).
  • Homage: Tons, mainly to Tolkien. Many major fantasy works of the last 50 years get name-dropped at least once.
  • Hostage for MacGuffin: Heather offers the final Orb to the Queen of Twilight in exchange for Veronica's life. Though it wasn't the real Orb of Neftalion, and Heather knew it.
  • Joisey: Right there in the title, although not particularly important to the plot.
  • Kill It with Fire: When Karn kills the Drizzly Witch with one fireball.
  • Monster in the Moat: The Fragile Hag's tower is guarded by the Moat Beast, a huge apelike creature who feeds on the garbage thrown into the moat. He's chained up, but the chains break when the Fragile Hag dies, freeing the Moat Beast.
  • Na├»ve Newcomer: Heather hasn't read The Queen of Twilight before, so she knows nothing about the world. Or the rules of the fantasy genre in general, making her a true wild card.
  • Non-Human Sidekick: The Moat Beast and Karn.
  • Obviously Evil: The Queen of Twilight.
  • Off the Rails: Veronica keeps trying to get the plot back on the rails, but Heather keeps steering them off.
  • Our Elves Are Different: The Sylvan elves act high and mighty, but Heather rejects their prince (who was supposed to go on the mission) for a Kiblar elf, Doggett. Kiblar elves are generally considered lower-class, responsibly for serving the Sylvans. This eventually comes back when the Sylvan elves shun their prince, who refused to go, for being less brave than a Kiblar.
  • Palantir Ploy: The One can use the Orb to see the future. Too bad Heather isn't the One. Or is she?
  • Parental Abandonment: Heather's parents are barely there. Veronica's policeman father was killed in the line of duty.
  • Prophecy Twist: The One is destined to defeat the Queen of Twilight. Except Princess Arabelle was the One. Or was she? Was the One simply the person who defeated the Queen? It's all very vague.
    • Heather looks into the Orb of Neftalion and sees a vision of her handing it over to the Queen of Twilight. The scene happens just as she saw it, but the "orb" she hands over is a decoy.
  • Punny Name: The Keeb.. Kiblar elves are really into baking.
  • Second-Hand Storytelling: When Strathorn comes back, Veronica tells him to hurry up, however, because there's still a battle going on.
  • Squishy Wizard: Inverted by Strathorn: his magic is weakened because the Queen has two of the orbs, and he's a capable fighter with his staff.
  • Supervillain Lair: The Fragile Hag's tower has a moat with a Moat Beast, an elevator that only goes to the top floor, and a room full of the people she's turned to glass. The Twilight Queen's castle has dungeons and an elaborate illusion of a spooky maze, while the Queen's chamber is comfortably furnished and holds her magical tools of the trade as well as the Orbs.
  • Talking Animal: Chattergee, who also serves as a Casanova Wannabe.
  • Tall, Dark, and Snarky: Ibharn, Prince of the Sylvan elves. Subverted as well, because both Heather and Veronica think he's a jerk.
  • Trapped in TV Land: Well, okay book land.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: Heather is claustrophobic so trees pull her into the ground and she almost suffocates.
  • Wicked Witch: All three main bad guys.