Friday, June 9, 2017

Book review - The Song From Somewhere Else

Title: The Song from Somewhere Else
Author: A. F. Harrold
Genre: magical realism
Similar books: The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
                      Skellig by David Almond
intriguing, though not really my thing

Summary (provided by publisher): Frank thought her summer couldn't get any worse--until big, weird, smelly Nick Underbridge rescues her from a bully, and she winds up at his house.
Frank quickly realizes there's more to Nick than meets the eye. When she's at his house, she hears the strangest, most beautiful music, music which leads her to a mysterious, hidden door. Beyond the door are amazing creatures that she never even dreamed could be real. For the first time in forever, Frank feels happy . . . and she and Nick start to become friends.
But Nick's incredible secrets are also accompanied by great danger. Frank must figure out how to help her new friend, the same way that he has helped her.
Paired with gorgeous black-and-white illustrations from Levi Pinfold, acclaimed author A. F. Harrold weaves a powerful story about unlikely friendship, strange magic, and keeping the shadows at bay.

My Opinion: An interesting blend of multiple dimensions, magical realism, and mild horror. The first word I would use to describe it is, honestly, weird. The whole atmosphere is a half step away from normal, like a David Almond novel. Harrold takes a number of normal kid experiences (bullying, the missing cat, the weird kid at school) and makes them very "other", vaguely menacing. Shadows, mystery music, government, random ladies with carriages. All of these things are given mild menace. This would be a decent choice for a kid who enjoys reading outside of the mainstream.

More information: The Song From Somewhere Else releases July 4.
Advanced Reader Copy provided by NetGalley.

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