- Also check our best rated Children’s Book reviews
The Map That Breathed Hardcover – 1 Oct 2003
|New from||Used from|
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
About the Author
Melanie Gideon was born and brought up in Rhode Island and now lives in northern California with her family. This is her first novel for young readers.
|5 star (0%)|
|4 star (0%)|
|3 star (0%)|
|2 star (0%)|
|1 star (0%)|
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
Good points: Great descriptions, an interesting premise, and a truly threatening villain.
Bad points: Underdeveloped characters, too many things left unexplained, and an unsatisfying ending.
If Gideon had intended for this to be the first in a series of books about these characters or the imaginary world of Greenwater, that's fine. But as it was, the book didn't really stand on its own. I was hooked early on, but the ending wasn't satisfying and too many things were left a mystery. Where is Nora's father? Why is he so evil? What happened to the manacle? What is the origin of the Veil?
In addition, I felt that some of the characterizations fell rather flat. The conversations between Nora and Billy sometimes seemed stilted. Billy also had a strange habit of lapsing into speech that wasn't consistent with his age (he'd sound like a normal 11-year-old boy one moment, and then like a sage elder the next... it was a jarring transition and came off as somewhat corny).
Also, introducing pivotal characters at the midpoint of the novel seemed rather contrived. Rip only appears twice before the end, and his presence seems rather "deus ex machina"... too convenient, as if Gideon needed a way to tie up her loose ends regarding the Provisioner.
If there is a sequel that goes into some of the points that were not explored in this book, that's great. If not, the story was rather incomplete and will probably leave most readers wanting. The beginning was good, but unfortunately the momentum doesn't last.
I highly recommend this book for kids 7 and up as the villain and his modus operandi maybe a little intense for younger readers.
"The Provisioner" gags children with a halter and removes their souls. The heroine finds her father had killed her mother, keeping her imprisoned while she gave birth. "Lucy lay in a pool of blood on a dirty mattress in a tenement building in Waitsfield...Nine months into the pregnancy she was bedridden and barely recognizable, her features swollen unnaturally, her skin a greenish blue." (page 205) It gets worse.
Look, I have no problem with any of this. Its a clever and imaginative book, but not for kids. What was she thinking?