How could I not…

How could I not love an author who weaves together a touching and terrifying tale of a boy and his tree…to be accurate, the boy is only one and a half millimetres tall and the tree is his home. Toby Lolness finds himself alone and on the run, pursued to the ends of the known world by a mob of angry tree citizens and terrifying insects. Faced with the perilous terrain of gigantic leaves, spiders and weevils and betrayed by those he thought he could trust, Toby must escape if his family is to survive.

This is story for children but it is the most heart-warming, eye-opening book I have read in ages. I have a pile of papers on my desk littered with quotes from this unassuming book, “Toby Alone” by Timothee de Fombelle. It is a ripping yarn but with oodles of heart and seasoned with wisdom that is both deep and rare. I LOVED this book. I want to own this book…I wish I had written this book. It hides some deep and pressing truths behind an exciting adventure and intelligent humour. The story touches on complex issues such as the destruction of our planet and the existence of life beyond ourselves, the pervasiveness of capitalism, the loss of community and of faith, and family and personal loss as well! And it is spattered with fantastic characters and adventures. How could I not give it to my nine-year-old son? How could I not want his intellect brightened and expanded by it?

“His mother had taught him to read when he was three, teaching him that words are the enemy of darkness. If you choose to be their friend, they will help you out all your life. But if you don’t, they’ll block your path. Maya had explained that was why people talked about being ‘familiar’ with a word or language. They were like family to you.”

“It’s very important to kiss your wife and son. That’s not irrelevant, it’s the heart of everything.”

“From watching Maya that day, Toby realised that when you mourn somebody, you also mourn what they didn’t give you. Maya was mourning the mother she’d never had. From now on, one thing was certain, she would never have a perfect mother in her life. And that was why she was sobbing. It was as if, right to the last, you hold out for a gesture or a word that will make up for everything. As if death also kills the gesture that was never made, or the word that was never said.”

How could I not recommend that you go out right now and buy (or at least borrow) a copy of this book and read it for yourself and give it to others and make it’s words part of your family?!!? I have a sneaking suspicion that this book could become a children’s classic… with ten literary awards, it should be!

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. kathy wight
    Jun 23, 2011 @ 22:50:22

    Well then, you got my attention and I will put that book on my list. It’s nice to escape with a book but also glean some truth and wisdom from it. Looking forward to reading it. Thanks

    Like

    Reply

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