by Cornelia Funke
On a dark stormy night, Meggie Folchart’s life takes quite an unexpected turn. A stranger by the name Dustfinger shows up on this night and warns her father Mo that a certain someone (Capricorn) is looking for him. Mo packs he and his daughter and they leave heading towards Italy. Mo decides to visit Elinor who is Meggie’s mother’s aunt. Mo is a bookbinder by trade and been requested by Elinor to repair some older books she had. By the way, all three are bibliophiles. Oddly enough Mo will not read out loud.
While they are at Elinor’s, Capricorn sends men to capture Mo who is also known as Silvertongue. It seems that Dustfinger betrayed Mo to save his own skin. Elinor, Meggie, and Dustfinger (who is overwhelmed by guilt) go to save Mo. It turns out that Mo has quite a magical gift. He possesses the ability to read things in and out of books. One night he was reading the book Inkheart to her mother Theresa, he read four characters out of the book: Capricorn, Basta, Dustfinger, and Gwin (who is a marten which is a small animal). But he also ended up reading his wife into the novel. For years, he tried to read Theresa out but was unsuccessful. Capricorn wants his ability. He has a reader named Darius; however Darius is unable to read people out of stories without disfiguring them. Elinor, Meggie, and Dustfinger are captured.
At first Capricorn wants Mo to read to him out of treasure books so he can amass gold. While reading 1,001 Arabian nights Mo accidentally reads out a boy named Farid. But Capricorn’s sinister plan is too bring the Shadow (the ultimate evil from Inkheeart) into our world. Dustfinger does help Mo, Elinor, Meggie, and Farid escape. Mo believes that the only way to avert danger is to find a copy of the book. To do that, they track down the author Fenoglio. Anyway, Meggie, Fenoglia, and Mo are recaptured. During this time Meggie discovers she has the gift as well. Unfortunately, Capricorn becomes aware of this. So he decides to have Meggie read out the Shadow. Meanwhile, Dustfinger works on a rescue attempt with the aid of Resa a mute whom Darius read out of Inkheart. Resa is short for Theresa, Meggie’s mother.
The day before Meggie has to read out the Shadow, Fenoglio writes a different ending to the story that destroys Capricorn but has a happy ending. Meggie brings the Shadow out of the book but ends up sending Fenglio into it. The Shadow and Capricorn are destroyed. Mo, Resa, Darius, and Meggie go to live with Elinor. Dustfinger and Farid steal the last copy of Inkheart and are determined to find a way to return Dustfingr to the story.
I liked this book. It was a very interesting concept. There have been times I would have loved to have lived in one of the books I read. Especially some of the fantasy books. I mean dragons, unicorns, Floo powder all sounds a bit exciting. But I guess it is a little different reading about something that is happening as opposed to experiencing it. After seeing what these characters went through, I think I’d much prefer being a spectator! This is the first book in this series. I believe this will be in the theaters soon.
So how many of you have read this book? Did you like it? What did you think of the length of the novel? I have to confess that this was a long and dense knowledge for children. I can understand by J. Scott Savage said in his interview that he didn’t want his first book to be too long because it might turn kids off. This book was over 550 pages long.