Why Do Little Girls Like Unicorns? (Like Thelma the Unicorn)

Last week Scholastic Australia gifted us with a lovely new book by Aaron Blabey, “Thelma the Unicorn”. I was excited to see the book, because our family had really enjoyed his last best seller, Pig the Pug, so my expectations were high. Even with such high expectations, I was astonished how Imogen fell in love with the book the moment she saw the front cover.

Thelma the Unicorn

She immediately gasped, grabbed the book declaring she loved it and demanded I read it instantly. It may have been that the title is featured in glitter. My girl doesn’t mind a bit of bling. I suspect that perhaps a small pink obsessed girl may have instantly been attentive because the cover also featured “her colour”. God help us if someone drinks out of the pink cup in our house. Princess over four brothers, she has a self proclaimed entitlement to all things pink. I have protested in vain that pink is everyone’s colour, it is not a girl’s colour. The four boys and little mademoiselle disagree and ignore my attempts to make colours gender neutral.

What I did not expect was the instant endearment she felt towards unicorns. The small girl has no exposure to unicorns up until this point. Yet after meeting Thelma she is besotted with them. How did that happen, I ask you? I mean Thelma was not even a real unicorn! She was a plain little ordinary pony who stuck a carrot on her nose and was fortunate enough to have a truck full of pink paint and glitter lose control and deposit the contents on her, making Thelma an overnight sensation.

Thelma immediately felt that she was special, and I have to say that my daughter agreed.

Thelma the Unicorn

I am still perplexed. Why? Why are unicorns special? Truly, horns really aren’t that attractive are they? After all, it is a live bone with a coating of keratin and proteins. I know that unicorns have all sorts of magical abilities, and I can see that there can be an attractiveness with the myth. But my daughter fell in love with a pretend unicorn instantly!

I’m not sure whether Immy has altogether picked up the greater message in this book that to be happy with who you are is far more worthy than fame or celebrity. I’m hoping so, because it’s a message that all children, but particularly girls need to hear.

(I’m also hoping that this early exposure to the cruelties of fanatical fans and relentless media might discourage her from this young aged to never be a deranged stalker fan or loathsome paparazzi. You know, it’s always good to get some of those subliminal messages in there!)

In any case, even though this has opened my little girl’s eyes up to the perplexing beauty of unicorns, this is a darling book, and I think if we keep reading it. Not that I have a choice, she insists we reads it. She will get the real message in time! Interestingly, when I read to all the children, the boys instantly liked Thelma’s plain old mate Otis. They didn’t really get what the unicorn fuss was about, and were truly happy for Otis that Thelma decided to ditch the horn and become content being herself.

Linking today with Essentially Jess for IBOT.

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