The Whisper

The Whisper

Book - 2015
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Twelve-year-old Alistair continues his quest to find his missing friend, Fiona, in Aquavania, a world where wishes can nearly come true, but he learns that the Whisper, once a boy named Charlie from his own world, has plans for Alistair and has used Fiona to try to get to him.
Publisher: New York : Farrar Straus Giroux, 2015
ISBN: 9780374363116
0374363110
Characteristics: 361 pages ; 22 cm
Call Number: J STARMER, A

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JCLChrisK Mar 09, 2016

This series. Wow. So different and unexpected than most everything else out there. And this second book that is so unexpectedly different than the first, that reframes and deepens and changes The Riverman as it expands that book's universe exponentially.

In my review of The Riverman I wrote, This is a mystery book. But is it a fantasy book? That's the mystery. That's because Alistair was an observer in the first book, slowly drawn into caring about a strange world that might have been a fantasy horror and might have been a psychological thriller--with drastic consequences either way.

Now Alistair knows which it is, because he has gone from observer to participant, from watcher to doer. He has entered the fantasy horror. His role has changed, his perspective has changed, his setting has changed. He is still in pursuit of Fiona, but now it's in a fluid land of myth and stories and imagination. Anything a twelve-year-old mind might conjure can exist in Aquavania, and most of it does. The place has rules, but Alistair knows none of them. He has to figure out how to negotiate the ever varied and changing landscape in the hopes of achieving his goals--one of which has become simply getting home. And, as in The Riverman, his ex-best friend Charlie has a much larger role to play than Alistair ever expected.

Also as in that first book, this is a journey of discovery. It is a mystery, because the more we learn, the more we realize we know less than ever.

These are beautifully written, intricately plotted and layered books that never condescend to their middle grade audience. Teens and adults would enjoy them just as much, I believe. They are the kind of books that want repeat reading, because you know you will learn and understand so much more the second and third times through.

I only wish they had covers that better did them justice, because those don't compel engagement nearly as much as the contents they contain.

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green_cat_6846
Dec 03, 2018

green_cat_6846 thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 8 and 14

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