This book requires an investment of detailed attentiveness for there are sweet gems strewn throughout this little, biggish book. It retains an endearing quality and shines with a sustainable resplendency. This work was manipulated with meticulous hands. The names are fun and the love story is told from a different vantage—for goodness sake the courted Lily Marshmallow only says one word and that is merely an affirmation. He, Prince Gobbledygook, falls in love with haste and emotes with a sweet flamboyance. Here is a summation of Happyland: A Fairy Tale in Two Parts:
Prince Gobbledygook saunters aimlessly and fancy-free. He is stopped by a skillful stop sign: Lily Marshmallow’s head. Lily Marshmallow is a lonely lily (a lonelily). Prince Gobbledygook declares his natural, spontaneous love for her and she becomes his wife, his life. Prince Gobbledygook and Lily Marshmallow come across a Big Wig Sophisticated Pig, Brutus Beaujolais, who guides them, slyly, to define happiness. They buttonhole, Cornelius Wordbook, an English gentleman with a book-for-a-head and look for the definition of happiness. Prince Gobbledygook already wants to call it quits and only after a pair of chanced encounters. Lily Marshmallow points to a wishing-well after Prince Gobbledygook’s drawn-out soliloquy, wherein he reveals his name, his insides and prays for tickets to Happyland. Part II of the story develops into a more straightforward fairy tale with some philosophical jousting. Leopold Balthazar II challenges Prince Gobbledygook (Billy Lavender is the revelation that is his name) to a duel. The duel turns into a verbose dialogue of dueling words, wherein Adolfo Dumfries, a writer, usurps Lily Marshmallow and absconds with her to his Ivory Tower. Leopold Balthazar II postpones the duel and tells his little story—for he was born in Happyland. Billy Lavender finds her, Lily Marshmallow’s, fallen slipper and together with Leopold Balthazar II they enter the Ivory Tower. They take back Lily and go to Happyland together. Billy Lavender donates his ticket to Leopold Balthazar II and he enters Happyland. He is left drinking tea with Lily and listening to laughing flowers outside the gates of Happyland.
That is all rather festive, but the writing is just so joyous and endures throughout this swiftly paced story. I think he aims for pseudo-profundity—it may be deliberate. We never actualize Happyland. His intention must’ve been to create a place, but we never get to see that said place because even he doesn’t know what is inside—with exception of laughing flowers and Father (Yabba Yabba). It is the journey to the truth, but I find the protagonist untruthful at times. He could’ve delved deeper and completed something with concrete answers (for the children, or the steampunkers). We don’t know any of the characters (except superficially). Experimental stories of this sort tend to be flawed because they are too impressed by their own experimentations and he is deeply impressed by Himself. He succeeds in some clever lines. But it was an enjoyable ride and the alliterations are great. But the love story endures because Prince Gobbledygook truly loves Lily and it captured in the last illustration.