Eleven year-old Tilly has lived above her grandparents' bookshop ever since her mother disappeared shortly after she was born. Like the rest of her family, Tilly loves nothing more than to escape into the pages of her favourite stories.
One day Tilly realises that classic children's characters are appearing in the shop through the magic of 'book wandering' - crossing over from the page into real life. With the help of Anne of Green Gables and Alice in Wonderland.
Tilly is determined to solve the mystery of what happened to her mother all those years ago, so she bravely steps into the unknown, unsure of what adventure lies ahead and what dangers she may face.
I've had a readers copy of this book sitting on my shelf at home, for quite a while, before I finally opened up to page one today and began reading. Anna James must have read the Inkheart series (or similar) or at least knew of the premise (bringing book characters to life) before creating the world of Tilly and her grandparents. This book is one that my co-workers keep recommending and I can see why, it has magic, discovery and some well loved characters. I will say that I did find Anne and Alice both rather annoying but they weren't in the book enough to put me off it.
James has created an interesting world here and I like the rules that are plotted out, such as to never stay in a book for too long or you may forget the real world and just what happens if you are in a book and it ends...? The plot itself was predictable, I knew the big secrets Tilly's grandparents were keeping, I knew who the bad guy was and their origin story, I knew what had happened to her mum and why etc. but that didn't lessen the enjoyment that I got out of the book, turning that final page and having it end well, not a perfect sappy happy ending but a good one.
There is now a second in the series, now out and a third on its way, I'm not hanging out to read the next books, but give me a slow day at work and I shall grab down the next book and see where Tilly wanders into next.
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