Monday, October 15, 2007

The Mysterious Edge of the Heroic World by E.L. Konigsburg

Well, I had mixed feelings about this book. I was hooked on the story and the characters right from the beginning, although I don't remember any of the adults from their roles in the two previous books, Silent to the Bone and The Outcasts of 19 Schuyler Place. After Amadeo Kaplan and his mom move from New York City to St. Malo, Florida, he strikes up a friendship with William, another oddball kid, when he spots William's mother's car at the home of an eccentric neighbor that Amadeo is fascinated by. William's mother has been hired to catalog and sell the neighbor's belongings in preparation for her move into a nursing home. The neighbor, Mrs. Zender, is the former Aida Lily Tull, the richest girl in St. Malo who went on to become an opera star. Now, at the same time this drama is unfolding, Amadeo's godfather Peter, a museum curator in NYC, is putting together an exhibit of art that was banned by the Nazis during World War II. Quite a lot of interesting information is given about Hitler and his attitude towards art. I won't begin to try to tell you how these two plots fit together. My main complaint is that in an effort to wrap up the plot, way too much is crammed into the last bit of the book, so if you read it, be prepared to slog through the last few chapters. Review by Stacy Church

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