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Wednesday, April 25, 2007

The Book Without Words

by Avi
I read this book for a couple of reasons. One, for the Once Upon a Time Challenge and two, because I have enjoyed the few Avi books I've read.

This is a fable with a moral. Remember the axiom: Be careful what you wish for, it just may come true? That's the message of this young teen book. One of the main characters says, at the end of the book, "Magic takes what it gives, but life gives what we take." A little bit different twist, but after reading the book, the two sayings are closer than they seem.

There's quite a bit of humor woven into this suspenseful story about trying to satisfy one's desires. The cast of characters includes an old alchemist who is making stones that will allow him to live forever. He owns a talking pet crow and has a poor, orphaned servant girl who live with him. The alchemist dies before he succeeds in his goal. The crow and girl, Sybil, have to combine wits to figure out how to survive. They have the Book Without Words that they believe will tell them how to make gold, if they can find a child with green eyes to read it. They find 2 boys that become part of the plot.

At one point Sybil says to her master, "What good is life, if, by avoiding death, you didn't live?"

I enjoyed this quick little read and will now be passing it on to someone through bookmooch. If you would like to mooch it, check my inventory.

14 comments:

Debi said...

I read a review by someone else who read this for the Once Upon a Time Challenge, and she simply wasn't impressed. But my daughter just read it last week and loved it. And your review made it sound quite delightful. Sounds like it really is worth a read. Thanks for your lovely review!

hellomelissa said...

i was just wondering if the book might be appropriate for children... it sounds like something my 8 yr old would like. whaddya think, booklogged? sounds like debi's daughter liked it... i wonder how old she is.

Cassie said...

Sounds interesting. I think I'll add it to my list.

booklogged said...

Debi, I think it's worth the read and it only takes a little while.

Melissa, amazon.com says grades 5 - 8. It's a bit scary. It's a pretty quick read, so you may want to read it first.

Cassie, If you enjoy YA and children's I think you'd like this one. I liked The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle and Crsipin: Lead of Cross even more, though.

Carrie K said...

It sounds intriguing. Not to mention that is one cool cover art.

Nymeth said...

I'd never heard of Avi before. By the end of this challenge by "to be read" list is going to be longer than I ever thought possible!

Carl V. said...

I recall reading a negative review of this as well but yours makes it sound interesting. I've only had one Avi experience, Strange Happenings, and had wondered about this one because I love the cover art. I think I'll add this to the list. I generally like ravens and crows in books so that alone makes it intriguing.

dewey said...

I wanted to mooch it, but it seems to be gone. I probably have no points, anyway!

Framed said...

I bought this one because the cover was so interesting, but haven't read it yet. I didn't like Crispin all that well so I hope I like Book Without Words better.

Stephanie said...

Wow. This really sounds interesting!! I really, really enjoy YA books too. I may have to check it out!

Lover of Books said...

This one sounds good. :)
Krista

BookOkie said...

I haven't read this particular title by Avi. Started it but just couldn't get into it. Although I was delighted to hear Avi speak at my library recently. He was great at communicating with the kids who asked questions. Even got my copy of The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle signed.

Tristi Pinkston said...

Avi is one of my favorite authors. The amazing thing about him is that every one of his books is so different, you'd swear it was written by a different author. He's amazing.

Lotus Reads said...

The Summer hols are close and my 12-year old is on the lookout for books and more books, I am definitely going to to suggest she read this one, thank you so much for reviewing this book, booklogged!