|by Funke, Cornelia Caroline; Bell, Anthea
|Cast of Characters||xii|
|The Inn of the Strolling Players||55||(16)|
|Strange Sounds on a Strange Night||147||(7)|
|Visitors from the Wrong Side of the Forest||193||(8)|
|In the Dungeon of the Castle of Night||466||(5)|
|In the Tower of the Castle of Night||513||(7)|
In the captivating sequel to Inkheart, a year has passed and times have changed, but Meggie, Dustfinger, and Farid long for the past, and will do anything to find that special place in Inkheart again.
Cornelia Funke is the internationally acclaimed, bestselling author of The Thief Lord, Dragon Rider, and the Inkheart trilogy, along with many other chapter and picture books for younger readers. She lives in Los Angeles, California, in a house filled with books.
/*Starred Review*/ Gr. 6-9. Readers who enjoyed Funke's Inkheart (2003) are in for a treat with this sequel, a stronger book than its predecessor. In the first volume of the trilogy, a few characters have the ability to "read" a character out of a book and into today's world. In this book the process is reversed, and most of the earlier characters are transported to the magical yet perilous and sometimes brutally violent land of the fictional book, also called Inkheart. Young Meggie has longed to visit that world, but once she travels there she realizes the consequences of her choice and the seeming impossibility of putting things right in either place. With the help of Fenoglio, the book's author, who now lives in the secondary world, she connives to turn events toward a good outcome. Though some readers will simply enjoy the adventure story, others will be intrigued by Fenoglio's reflections on the impossibility of controlling what he has created. As before, the book's focus shifts from one group of characters to another as the plot moves swiftly. An indispensable key to the numerous characters precedes the story. Readers will enjoy the many quotes at chapter headings from writers as diverse as Margaret Atwood, David Almond, Kate DiCamillo, Harper Lee, Pablo Neruda, Philip Pullman, J. K Rowling, and T. H. White. In short, a booklover's book. ((Reviewed October 1, 2005)) Copyright 2005 Booklist Reviews.
Gr. 6-12. One dark night, a mysterious man called Dustfinger appears at the house where Meggie lives with her father, a bookbinder. Dustfinger's arrival sets in motion a long, complicated chain of events involving a journey, fictional characters brought to life, dangerous secrets revealed, threats of evil deeds, actual evil deeds, a long-lost relative found, and the triumph of creativity and courage. Despite the presence of several well-developed, sympathetic characters, the plot is often driven by the decidedly menacing, less-convincing villains. Although Meggie, one of the few young people in the book, remains the central character, she is not always in the forefront of the action or even on the scene. The points of view of sympathetic adult characters become increasingly important and more fully developed as the story progresses. Like many other fantasies, this will appeal to a broad age range, though the writing is far less child-centered than it is, for example, in the Harry Potter series. Translated from the German, this long book was written by the author of The Thief Lord (2002). ((Reviewed September 1, 2003)) Copyright 2003 Booklist Reviews
One year after the events of Inkheart (2003), one by one, the characters find themselves read from the real world into the Inkworld. Dustfinger is ecstatic to be back home after his long exile; Meggie is thrilled to explore the story that has seduced her with its beauty; Mo and Resa want only to bring their daughter Meggie back. The metaliterary musings begun in the previous title become grander here, as each character grapples with the possibility of challenging the fate that has been written. Fenoglio, the author of the fictional Inkheart, takes on a tragic role, as he sees his godlike idyll threatened when his words and characters take on lives of their own. Woven in and around the breakneck adventure is the provocative notion that words, and the meanings they carry, are plastic and ever susceptible to change. While the permeability of the membrane between imagination and reality may form the base of the novel, Funke delivers more than enough action, romance, tragedy, villainy and emotion to keep readers turning the pages-and waiting for the sequel the cliffhanger ending promises. (Fiction. 10+) Copyright Kirkus 2005 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.
It is hard to avoid preciosity in books about books, but here Funke pulls off the feat with vigor. Meggie, an avid reader, lives alone with her father, a bookbinder; her mother disappeared years before. When a disturbing stranger named Dustfingers intrudes on their peace, she gradually discovers that the barrier between books and the real world is permeable and that an ill-fated read-aloud years ago unleashed Capricorn, who "would feed [a] bird to [a] cat on purpose . . . and the little creature's screeching and struggling would be as sweet as honey to him." Funke takes her time with her tale, investing her situations with palpable menace and limning her characters with acute sensitivity; she creates in Meggie a stalwart heroine who never loses her childish nature even as she works to contain the monster and bring her mother back. Master translator Bell takes the German text and spins out of it vivid images and heart-stopping language that impel the reader through this adventure about narratives-a true feast for anyone who has ever been lost in a book. (Fiction. 10+) Copyright Kirkus 2003 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.