Max Starling’s theatrical father likes to say that at twelve a boy is independent. He also likes to boast (about his acting skills, his wife’s acting skills, a fortune only his family knows is metaphorical), but more than anything he likes to have adventures. Max Starling’s equally theatrical mother is not a boaster but she enjoys a good adventure as much as her husband. When these two disappear, what can sort-of-theatrical Max and his not-at-all theatrical grandmother do? They have to wait to find out something, anything, and to worry, and, in Max’s case, to figure out how to earn a living at the same time as he maintains his independence. This is the first of three books, all featuring the mysterious Mister Max.
The premise given for The Book of Lost Things sounded so promising I couldn’t resist swooping up this middle grade title. As expected with a number of MG books I had to suspend belief / disbelief and just roll with things no matter how silly I felt things were getting. In this respect, I definitely believe this one a title for children, and not one that would work well as a cross over. At least not for me personally. When I read middle grade fiction I approach it trying to put myself into a preteen mindset of – will my nephews enjoy this? Will I enjoy reading this with my child? In this case I would say kids would likely enjoy this, but an adult would be less likely to.
Unfortunately, The Book of Lost Things falls into the very small realm of books I can’t bring myself to continue. We start off with Max’s parents getting kidnapped and he is determined to save them. But he gets so completely sidetracked constantly that it makes me wonder what was really the main point. Finally I decided it just wasn’t for me because I found myself not caring.
But here are a few people that I know either loved or seriously enjoyed the book. So you don’t have to take my word for it.
Tiffing @ Mostly YA Lit gave it 4Stars
Beth @ Beth’s Book Reviews gave it 4 stars