Over the years I've had many favourite books, like I'm sure we've all had, and in the future I hope to have many more. Growing up, my favourite books changed a lot. From books like Spot and The Zoo, to the Famous Five and The Magic Faraway Tree, to the Edgewood Chronicles and A Series of Unfortunate Events, to The Hobbit and Eragon...and then my favourites more recently. And I still love all these books, but I remember absolutely loving Inkheart, by Cornelia Funke, both when I read it, and years after.
Inkheart is the story of Meggie, a 12 year old girl, who lives with her father, Mo, a bookbinder. Books are at the centre of their lives, and everything they do and are. I like to think that our houses are similar - small and with books piled high on every surface and inch of floor. But I digress...Despite that fact that Mo is a bookbinder, and that both he and Meggie read like there's no tomorrow, Mo has not read aloud to Meggie since before her mother disappeared, years earlier. One night, a stranger arrives at the house, and the truth starts to emerge. Mo doesn't read aloud to Meggie because every time he does, the characters literally come alive; they step out of the pages of the stories into the real world. When Meggie was 3, Mo read aloud from a book called Inkheart, and on that night, Meggie's mother disappeared into the story...
I won't say too much more, but I will tell you that it is a fantastic book, whether you're a fantasy lover or not. It's a story within a story, and the characters are so creative and extreme that they draw you in even more with every page. There are baddies and goodies, sadness and joy, and a whole heap of awesome.
It was first published in 2003, and since then, Funke has written 3 more books as sequels to Inkheart. I have to be honest, I haven't read them yet, but I'm sure they are just as amazing. There is also a movie that came out in 2008, which I haven't seen. I've heard mixed reviews about the movie...but if this sounds interesting to you, please please please start with the book.
This review was written by regular reviewer Anjali, get to know her here.
Image from Goodreads