Monday, July 15, 2013

The Book of Nonsense by David Michael Slater

The Book of Nonsense: Sacred Books, Volume 1, David Michael Slater.  Austin, Tx.: CBay Books, 2011 and 2008.  e-book, 125 pps.

I've enjoyed several books of late featuring creepy bookstores.  David Michael Slater's offering for  middle school students and tweens is sure to satisfy.  Daphna and David Wax are twins.  Their dad Milton is a book hunter and is away all too frequently hunting up rare books in foreign places.  Mum died many years ago.  David is upset by Milton's absences.  He deals with it by going off on his own.  Daphna shares Milton's love of old books.  When the Antiquarian Book Center [A.B.C.] opens up near their home, she can't wait to tell Milton about it.  

It is just before the twins' thirteenth birthday when Milton returns from a trip.  Predictably, David has vacated the premises.  Daphna can't wait to show her dad the new A.B.C.  Milton has brought home a rare book.  Together they take it to the bookstore.  But things don't quite go as planned.  A.B.C. specializes in magic books.  The magic swirling around the store owner and his assistant is not the pleasant kind.

sapphoq reviews saysDavid Michael Slater shines at developing realistic and interesting characters.  During the story, we are introduced to a group of oldsters at a nearby home that Daphna reads to weekly, Latona Pellonia or Latty who is the housekeeper for the Wax clan and rather overprotective of the twins, and some bullies who serve to humiliate Dexter.  The bullies are quite realistic.  The oldsters aren't, but they fit in quite well with the story.  The Book of Nonsense builds in suspense to a satisfying conclusion.  I liked it and I think middle school fans of fantasy and mystery will like it too.  Highly recommended.


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