The Children’s Book Review | January 13, 2016
Written by Tahereh Mafi
Age Range: 9-12
Hardback Book: 416 pages
Publisher: Dutton Children’s Books
What to expect: Fantasy, Adventure, Friendship
The land of Ferenwood is about two things: magic and color. And poor little Alexis Queensmeadow is born without either. In a place where people eat flowers and the sky rains light, Alexis is extraordinarily dull. Her mother doesn’t seem to like her, her brothers annoy her, and her father, the only person who really understood her, disappeared more than a year ago.
But Alexis is twelve, and all children of Ferenwood must reveal their magical gifts at the Surrender ceremony. Alexis shows her best ability, and is humiliated. Oliver, an annoying old classmate, attempts to comfort her and admits he knows where her father is – and that together, they can save him. Alexis has nothing to lose, and sets off on an adventure through lands so bizarre that even a flower eating girl with no color thought it strange. But can she and Oliver, a boy who is gifted with lying, find her father and make it back to Ferenwood without being killed?
Tahereh Mafi is the best-selling author of the SHATTER ME series, and this is her middle-grade debut. Mafi is a highly evocative writer, pulling at your heartstrings with descriptions so lush that you have to read them twice. Alexis is a suitably sympathetic character (who wouldn’t feel bad for an ordinary girl in a magical world?) and Oliver is fresh and interesting. Alexis has a reckless, unbounded spirit that calls to readers to engage with her. The world-building is top-notch and full of rich visuals. At times this can be distracting from the main storyline, as is Oliver’s reason to not simply tell Alexis where her father is and what it takes to get to him. But overall the story and writing are beautiful, exciting and an excellent take on the middle-grade fantasy genre. Lovers of fantasy will revel in the world of FURTHERMORE, likely reading the story several times just to be immersed in such a colorful, exciting world. Recommended for children 9-12.
About Tahereh Mafi
Tahereh Mafi is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Shatter Me series. She can usually be found over-caffeinated and stuck in a book. You can find her online just about anywhere at @TaherehMafi or on her website, www.taherehbooks.com.
Furthermore, by Tahereh Mafi, was reviewed by Denise Mealy. Discover more books like Furthermore by following along with our reviews and articles tagged with Adventure, Fantasy, Friendship, and Middle Grade Books.
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