Wednesday, March 11, 2009

A Finder's Magic

Pearce, Philippa. 2009. (Originally published in Britain in 2006). A Finder's Magic. Illustrated by Helen Craig. Candlewick Press. 121 pages.

When a boy loses his dog in a meadow, a magical quest is the result when a strange old man calling himself a 'Finder' shows up to comfort the boy. Together the old man and the young boy will use 'magic' to discover just what happened to the dog. The magic includes using one of the muddy toys belonging to the dog. The Finder allegedly embeds a message within the toy and when it is thrown at various animals, the finder can 'hear' from the animals in question. (Another example, the boy shoves the muddy toy down into a mole hole and waits for the mole's response.) Not learning much from the birds, only learning the slightest from the mole, they seek a cat--a former familiar from a witch--for further clues. This leads to a riddle of sorts. But it is when they seek information from human witnesses that things begin to move along.

For me, this one was a dull book. I wanted to like this book. I just couldn't make myself feel it. The book is the last one written by Philippa Pearce. And the book was written for two of her grandchildren. It is even illustrated by her grandkids' other grandmother, Helen Craig. It was a heart-felt project, inspired by love. And I wanted to connect with it. It just didn't happen. I do think that others might like it more than I did.

© Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews
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Ms. Yingling 7:32 AM  

Unfortunately, this sounds like the sort of book that has gone out fashion. Sad, but true.

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