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Author: Wexler, Django
[Volume 1] When her father is lost at sea shortly after meeting a very unusual visitor, Alice must leave her home to live with an "uncle" whose rural Pennsylvania estate includes a massive and mysterious library that holds much more than books.
Forbidden Library, 1
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 5.80
Points: 11.0 Quiz: 169254
|Reading Counts Information:|
Interest Level: 6-8
Reading Level: 6.40
Points: 16.0 Quiz: 66255
Kirkus Reviews (02/01/14)
School Library Journal (04/01/14)
The Hornbook (00/03/14)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 04/01/2014 Gr 4–7—Alice is sent to live with her Uncle Geryon after her father's ship goes down in a storm. She's never heard of this man and doesn't know what to expect when she arrives at his mansion. The only instruction she is given is to avoid the library. Left to her own devices, she meets a talking cat named Ashes, and Isaac, a boy who challenges her to open a book from the forbidden library. Giving in to temptation, she picks one up, finds herself trapped inside it, and must fight her way out. Along the way, Alice learns about the secrets that surrounded her father and the truth about Uncle Geryon. Every character she meets has a hidden agenda and so she must be careful whom she trusts. Alice questions everything she has been told and has to figure out everyone's motives, ultimately relying on her wits to survive. Each chapter ends on a cliff-hanger, and eerie illustrations enhance the story. This novel is reminiscent of Corneila Funke's Inkheart (Scholastic, 2003) and Neil Gaiman's Coraline (HarperCollins, 2002). Wexler ingeniously creates an inventive world with interesting creatures and frightening situations. The ending will leave children with many questions, as a sequel is strongly implied.—H. Islam, Brooklyn Public Library - Copyright 2014 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Booklist - 04/15/2014 Twelve-year-old Alice has always been obedient, studious, and polite. So she is not sure what to do when she sees her father being threatened by a fairy when he has always insisted fairies weren’t real. Before she can ask, he disappears on a business trip, and Alice is sent to a mysterious uncle living in a labyrinthine estate complete with a forbidden library. Like another Alice, she follows a talking cat into the enchanted space in search of answers. It’s a perfect, if traditional, setup, and fans of Harry Potter and Cornelia Funke’s Inkheart (2003) will relish that the library houses magical books, which only Readers can use. After entering a book and defeating the creature therein, and thus harnessing its power, Alice becomes her uncle’s apprentice. It’s a joy to watch the dutiful Alice develop her innate curiosity and become a proactive, resourceful heroine, matching wits with snarky cats, dangerous beasts, and a certain smug boy. This is a charming, adventuresome fantasy from a promising new author. - Copyright 2014 Booklist.