Wednesday, January 9, 2013

liesl & po

liesl & po
lauren oliver
harper collins
published 2011

Liesl lives in a tiny attic bedroom, locked away by her cruel stepmother.  Her only friends are the shadows and the mice - until one night a ghost appears from the darkness.  It is Po, who comes from the Other Side.  Both Liesl and Po are lonely, but together they are less alone.

That same night, an alchemist's apprentice, Will, bungles an important delivery.  He accidentally switches a box containing the most powerful magic in the world with one containing something decidedly less remarkable.

Will's mistake has tremendous consequences for Liesl and Po, and it draws the three of them together on an extraordinary journey.

A sweet, sad story.  The first book I read by Lauren Oliver was Before I Fall.  It was excellent and surprising so I picked up Delirium when that one came out and found it to be good, but so very different than Before I Fall.  And now this book.  Quite different from them all!

Liesl is sweet and brave.  Po is grumpy, but sweet nonetheless.  Will is a bumbling goof, but somehow manages to be a hero.  The story reminded me of Roald Dahl's Mathilda (which I love) and a touch of Cinderella.  Kei Acedera's illustrations were few and far between, but when you turned the page to find one it was magical.

Though I got this one from the library, I'm tempted to buy it and read a chapter a night to Emma.  With ghosts and evil stepmothers, alchemists and an adventure it's the perfect bedtime story!

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