Maddy Kettle is one of those stories that starts off in medias res. Maddy is aboard a train speaking to her parents, but we notice in the fifth frame that her parents are mice. "Odd," we think to ourselves. "How can her parents be mice when she is a human girl?" Several pages later we see (in a flashback), that her parents were human until the Thimblewitch turned them into rodents. Eventually we learn the whole story as Maddy reminisces with her flying spadefoot toad, then explains her quest to some cloud cartographers she meets along the way to the Thimblewitch's home. As we piece together the story along with Maddy, we come to see that several events have intersected to cause her parents' transformation as well as bad luck for the witch and other inhabitants of the cloudscape.
Maddy is a resourceful heroine and she makes some interesting friends along the way - including a bear who is also a balloon pilot, a map-making raccoon, a talking bat, and her flying frog. She sees incredible sights like scarecrow guards, spider goblins, and cloud whales, but never loses track of her mission.
I would recommend this book to readers who enjoy fantasy adventures such as Coraline.
I read an e-book provided by the publisher through NetGalley. It will be published September 30, 2014.