Monday, December 20, 2021

Fall Reading 2021 Pages & Co.: The Book Smugglers

I don't know how I missed this series until now, but I am glad to have discovered it. A world where individuals can "bookwander" into a story and a rare few can even read things out of books and into the real world. A magical train that travels through the layers of Story and the real world powered by book magic. A secret Archive with a mysterious caretaker. And, of course, brave children risking danger to save their loved ones. 

Milo lives on the Sesquipedalian, or Quip, ”and he knew that, on paper at least, he made for a pretty good hero. He had so much in common with so many of the people he read adventures about: his parents had died tragically young, and the circumstances around the event were strange and secret; he was now looked after by an uncle who seemed to barely tolerate him, and he lived on a magical train that tracked down lost and forgotten books.” Despite the fact that Milo often feels more like a side character than a hero, he must do his best to save the day this time.

Together with Tilly and Oskar, whom he had met and worked with earlier in the series, Milo must find a way to save Tilly’s grandfather and his own uncle from a mysterious poison. They get a little backup from favorite story characters, travel through the pages of The Wizard of Oz to visit the Emerald City, and have dinner with the sinister Alchemist. Along the way they find a few clues about Milo’s family and the history of the Quip itself -  and learn more about the power of story and friendship.

This is a wonderful book for readers who enjoy fantastic voyages like The Phantom Tollbooth, literary magic like Inkheart, or adventures like Mr. Lemoncello's Library that reference favorite characters and stories. You can read this one, even if you haven’t read the first three installments - but it will make more sense to read them all in order.  Either way you will have a great time. 

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