I doubt there is much need for me to describe this book. If you like Stephen King or Dean Koontz, if you like C. S. Lewis (especially The Magician’s Nephew), if you like Tim Powers or James Blaylock (and you really should), if you have any appreciation for urban fantasy (though it is set in rural Kansas, I think the crossover setting still rates the comparison), if you like Neil Gaiman or Harry Potter or Gene Wolfe (especially, duh, There Are Doors), if you like Buffy the Vampire Slayer or Angel, you will love this book.
One of the sad things about marketing is that labels are used in order to attract readers that also repel many more. This book is YA (Young Adult), but I hope you will all realize that some of the best stories written for anyone at any age are officially YA.
I loved Leepike Ridge. Loved, loved, loved it. So when I saw this new author had a second novel coming out, I was very happy….
The adventures that follow are purely creepy. The darkness and intensity of the text being broken only slightly with humor now and then. For fans of Coraline by Neil Gaiman, this one will be a sure winner. I can see easily why this book could truly become a favorite with kids (and a few adults that will admit to reading kids books). But in all honesty, this book was WAY too creepy for me.
Right. Exactly. Way superior to Leepike Ridge. Calvin was totally freaked out. I think he moved his old Little League bat upstairs to his bedroom. It is totally fantastic.
And it bumped me out of a rut I get in commonly when my own worries make it impossible for me to read fiction. I couldn’t put 100 Cupboards down. I took it to sneak peaks while “helping” at my daughter’s birthday party today. Now I realize I have a stack of Blaylocks to read plus (perhaps) Neil Gaiman’s American Gods (though I’m not sure about that one). I’m pumped.
If you want some real reviews, consider Becky’s quoted above, and she links Miss Erin. Also, here is the official page. Personally, I think you would be better off not risking learning more about the story than you know now…
Oh, but I can’t end this without saying that the story’s atmosphere (and creepiness) was powerfully reminiscent of my childhood on the TRS-80. Of course, Nathan didn’t exist back then, so I doubt The Great Underground Empire could have been an influence. But what about one of the early Myst games? Some of the pictures in the first pages of the book, especially the one showing the two dials (I couldn’t find an image on the web) could be right out of that game. I would really like to know if there was any influence.