Thanks for being here! I am glad you came back for another review! This book was one I chose specifically for it’s cover. You can find more about why I did that by clicking here and reading my earlier post on cover buys! It has a truly gorgeous cover and after reading the description, I knew I’d be delighted by this novel.
The Book of Lost Things is a novel about 12 year-old David, whose mother has just died. While trying to come to terms with his death, David turns to his books and his father and when his father starts marrying his mother’s nurse only a few months after his mother’s death, he is only left with his books. The books, they begin to speak to him and as outrage and sadness grow in this young boy, they begin to speak louder until one day he follows the voices and ends up in another world. This world is one of monsters and seemingly ignoble knights and the Crooked Man, the same creature David saw in his room not too long ago. He goes into this unnamed world and once he realizes he can’t return, decides to press forward, seeking a king who should be able to help him. The only trouble is, will his father have even noticed he was gone?
Photo Courtesy of John Connolly’s Twitter!
Some of my favorite aspects of this novel dealt with the fairy tale quality of the entire plot. Connolly’s story made me read it to myself in what I like to call my “narrator” voice, the voice that comes in at the beginning of a story and says, “Once upon a time,” He includes several tales told by his characters that are just different versions of the ones we have often heard. And his originality and the way he morphs them to benefit his story is amazing. The characters are visceral and while we don’t have a lot to go on, you believe anyway because Connolly truly makes you want to.
On the other hand, there are two very things I abhorred about this novel and while one may be due to simple preference, the other is all on Connolly. The ending, to me, was a bit too simple. It was almost like that completely unsatisfying, “And they lived happily ever after,” except worse. If you read the book you’ll understand. I was completely engrossed before the last chapter and then I came out of it thinking, “Okay, is this it?” The second fact that I don’t like is that Connolly, however well-intentioned he may have been, includes his authorial intent in an added segment in the back. I won’t rant about it again, as those of you who read my earlier post (which can be found here) know why this upset me. But basically, it felt like Connolly was enforcing that his story only had one meaning and that there was no interpretation allowed on the part of the reader.
Here we are, at the place in my post where I give you a score. My score of this book is: 4/5.
Does the bonus reading affect it in any way? I would love to say “no” but I can’t. Don’t get me wrong, I truly enjoyed the novel but I would most likely have given this book a 5 if it weren’t for the overbearing section in which John Connolly discusses his authorial intent.
Have you read any of John Connolly’s work? What did you think about it? Let me know in the comments and I would be ingratiated to you if you followed this blog and shared it with others. Feel free to follow me on Instagram as well! You can find me right here. And I am looking for a few book suggestions so if you have any, that would be awesome!