Jin (osprey_archer) wrote,
Jin
osprey_archer

I'm baaaaaaaaack!

I think I may have melted into midget-ness in Orlando, due to the excessive heat. One hundred degree temperatures: DO NOT WANT.

We had a good time despite the sun. I hadn't seen my brother since Christmas, but aside from getting a tattoo and a job at Chili's he hasn't changed much. He's a good brother. He introduced me to Stargate back in the day, and he still thinks he's going to make me a fan of Farscape and Sliders.

Speaking of world-hopping. I read a book called 100 Cupboards on the flight to Florida. It's about a boy, Henry, who discovers a whole bunch of cupboards in his bedroom, all of which lead to different worlds. I liked it a lot. It has I-have-a-flight-at-six-tomorrow-so-I'll-stop-reading-at-the-end-of-chapter-eight-oh-wait-that-was-twenty-pages-ago pacing and a lovely, fluid prose style:

People liked Dotty. They said she was interesting. They rarely did the same for her husband. They said Mr. Willis was thin, and they didn't just mean physically. They meant thin everywhere and every way. Dotty saw much more than thin, and she liked him. Frank Willis didn't seem to notice much of anything beyond that..

Dotty and Frank are Henry's aunt and uncle. They get a bit more development than adults often do in children's books, which is nice. The characters as a whole aren't the roundest ever, but they're consistent without being caricatures and they're interesting, which makes up for any deficiencies in depth.

The worlds Henry visits or communicates with aren't deep either--he's only there just to skate along the interesting surface and move on, but it's exciting and what snippets there are do hang together. For instance, Henry gets a letter: In the course of our contempora ritualisms, we have discerned that certane of the lost byways have been both aired et stirred. We need not explain the means of our discernimentata... etc. It's garbled English, but there's a method to the garbling; it looks like the author (N. D. Wilson) spent some time getting it to sound like it might be linguistically sound.

If it had been my book i would have spent a lot more time flitting between cupboards (oh, I know, it's unfair to judge a book for not being the book I would have written. Bear with me) and less stuck in Kansas. I'm sure Kansas is almost as nice as Indiana (maligned midwestern states need to stick together, after all), but really. If there's a magic door, do you want to read about England during World War II, or do you want to read about Narnia?

But there's going to be a sequel, so perhaps the problem will be addressed. January 2009. I'm waiting.
Tags: book review, books, children's lit, real life
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