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The Book of Lost Things

Connolly, John

(Book - 2006)
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
The Book of Lost Things
Print
New York Timesbestselling author John Connolly's unique imagination takes readers through the end of innocence into adulthood and beyond in this dark and triumphantly creative novel of grief and loss, loyalty and love, and the redemptive power of stories.High in his attic bedroom, twelve-year-old David mourns the death of his mother. He is angry and alone, with only the books on his shelf for company. But those books have begun to whisper to him in the darkness, and as he takes refuge in his imagination, he finds that reality and fantasy have begun to meld. While his family falls apart around him, David is violently propelled into a land that is a strange reflection of his own world, populated by heroes and monsters, and ruled over by a faded king who keeps his secrets in a mysterious book...The Book of Lost Things.An imaginative tribute to the journey we must all make through the loss of innocence into adulthood, John Connolly's latest novel is a book for every adult who can recall the moment when childhood began to fade, and for every adult about to face that moment.The Book of Lost Thingsis a story of hope for all who have lost, and for all who have yet to lose. It is an exhilarating tale that reminds us of the enduring power of stories in our lives.
Publisher: New York : Atria Books, c2006
Edition: 1st Atria Books hardcover ed
ISBN: 0743298853
9780743298858
Branch Call Number: FICTION CONNOLLY
Characteristics: 339 p. ;,23 cm

Opinion

From Library Staff

Young David has lost a parent, gained a stepparent, and has a new brother. He is grieving, jealous, and ripe for the temptations of the Crooked Man.

After a 12-year-old loses his mother, he begins to hear the books they enjoyed together whispering to him -- and leading him into a land where fairy tale creatures become real.

12 year old David is angry and hurt after the death of his mother. He increasingly takes refuge in the fairy tales that he and his mother read together, until they take on a life of their own.

High in his attic bedroom, twelve-year-old David mourns the death of his mother. He is angry and alone, with only the books on his shelf for company. But those books have begun to whisper to him in the darkness, and as he takes refuge in his imagination, he finds that reality and fantasy have beg... Read More »

High in his attic bedroom, twelve-year-old David mourns the death of his mother. He is angry and alone, with only the books on his shelf for company. But those books have begun to whisper to him in the darkness, and as he takes refuge in his imagination, he finds that reality and fantasy have beg... Read More »


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Feb 11, 2015
  • lkucharski rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

A heartbreaking story that interweaves a child's dealing with loss and change with the magical world of fairy tales.

David escapes to a land of twisted fairy tales, but finds that the comfort he thought would be there is false. Ultimately he decides that returning home is important and while he still longs for the world of fantasy he has also developed a compassion for those he left behind.

While the story involves a child the story is really told for adults to read. It is written as a memory of an adult. At times I felt it a bit longish in tooth but the finale made up for it. I read a copy where the end of the book had a brief interview and review of all the fairy tale sources .... all the sources except a couple stories that the entire situation seems to be built around- The Wizard of Oz or Alice in Wonderland. The escape and return to home a changed person, one who sees things that makes them grow up a bit faster than usual due to the situation's brutal nature.

Wonderful story.

Aug 28, 2013
  • PaulaHoney rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

This is one of the best books I have ever read. Connolly is a genius! For those who have a background in the study of children's literature or folk and fairy tales, you will be pleased.
It is very Gaiman, very Grimm, and very very good.
Children and adults will enjoy. However, there are a lot of frightening scenes.

This is tied amongst two other books for my favorite book.

It was beautiful, heart breaking, unique and fascinating.

If you pick this book up and think it's not your cup of tea after the first chapter or two, just stick with it. The first part is important, but not indicative of what the rest of the book is like.

I thought there was no way to properly end it. I was wrong. The ending was perfect.

I wish the rest of the author's stories were this amazing.

Apr 30, 2013
  • jeanner222 rated this: 2 stars out of 5.

Once upon a time—for that is how all stories should begin—there was a boy who lost his mother.

This boy’s name is David, and the loss of his mother is all-consuming. He hasn’t a brother or a sister to comfort him, only a father, who already seems to have moved on to another woman.

In his grief, David immerses himself in books, as stories always connected him to his mother. As his father marries and has another son, David remains mired in his grief. Books are his only comfort.

A dramatic sequence of events changes everything for David. He is transported to another world, a world built by stories and fears and imagination. It is here that David is able to come to terms with life and death.

Jun 22, 2012
  • raydat51 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

In my top ten of fiction. Connolly may just be one of the finest writers out there right now. His Charlie Parker novels are fine detective fiction but this, a different area of fiction, is fine; capturing the sadness and pain of leaving childhood and the refusal of some to do so. His protagonist is a fine balance of anger and resentment versus his innate bravery and goodness. This is, in my judgement, adult fiction; there is much here that could cause nightmares or discomfort for a younger reader not ready for some of the issues raised. HIGHLY recommended.

May 08, 2012
  • humbleworm rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

Although initially set in first world war England like C.S. Lewis' "The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe" and involves an escape to another world, the comparison ends there. This story incorporates the grimmer aspects of fairy tale origins and has several similarities to the movie Coraline, but is not nearly as gruesome as Pan's Labyrinth. It ended too quickly, leaving the reader with an unnecessary final chapter just like the last Harry Potter book did.

Nov 01, 2011
  • crankylibrarian rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

12 year old David copes with family tragedy by plunging into a fantasy world comprised of nightmare elements from well-known fairy tales: sentient wolves, malevolent dwarves, and the terrifying Crooked Man, abductor of unhappy children. Creepy, funny, and disturbingly beautiful.

Aug 19, 2011
  • jandocr rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

I loved this book! From the first page I was hooked and it was so hard to put down. Although the story adds somewhat of a dark twist to fairy tales we know and love, it does so creatively and makes you want to read more. This book is very unique and is a great read!

Conolly has concocted a unique coming of age story gripped tightly in the clasp of a terrifying fairy tale. David carries his own anger and hatred into an alien world beset with evil. Each challenge he faces leads him to further understanding of his own nature. His growth from boy to man takes place in incremental stages until he truly sees clearly and is forever changed. The violence is quite graphic.It isn't a book for the faint of heart. I was touched by both the sadness and the promise of the end of the story.
J.V. Miller

May 21, 2011
  • becker rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

A book that takes the fairy tale to an adult level and creates a story that has multiple levels of meaning. It is dark, symbolic and mystical at some points and very witty and humerous at other points. A good read for anyone who appreciates the fairy tale both as a beautiful form of literature as well as a reflection of the human psyche.

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Jul 16, 2013
  • leah_p rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

leah_p thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over

May 15, 2012
  • humbleworm rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

humbleworm thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

May 21, 2011
  • becker rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

becker thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

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May 21, 2011
  • becker rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

"Once upon a time - for that is how all stories should begin - there was a boy who lost his mother."

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