It seems to me that the 1980s was a decade in which many of the great adventures we know today either got their start or were made widely popular. Timeless stories like The Princess Bride, Willow, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, and even Terminator have inspired modern stories to often echo these intrepid predecessors.
The Thieving Collectors of Fine Children’s Books by Adam Perry takes the 1980s approach to fantasy literature one step further by creating a brand-new story for today’s readers. Though the often referenced 1984 classic called The Timekeeper's Children exists only in this story, readers will find themselves wishing it were one they could read for themselves. Perry expertly blends his throwback tale with a futuristic setting, inserting references to tickle the fancy of book lovers of all ages. Please see my full review here.
Breaking from many modern storytelling conventions, The Thieving Collectors of Fine Children’s Books shatters the fourth wall and interacts directly with readers throughout the story. Foreshadowing abounds in predictable final lines of many chapters, regularly informing readers that no matter how bad things seem now, they are only going to get worse.
I love the way this story unfolds, using tangible signposts to help orient readers throughout the story. Mentions of traditional storytelling concepts like the perspective of the narrator and deus ex machina educate while entertaining, reinforcing concepts that are often learned in school. More than once, I imagined how the story would feel if played as a video game, taking readers even further into this delightful fantasy world. I highly recommend this unexpected, quirky story to readers of all ages.
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