Bookland (The Story of Bookland, Book I)
*I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a completely honest review*
I do not know where exactly to begin with this review. There is so much, yet so little, to say about this story and to top it off I’m not quite sure what words would fit the best.
Let me say that this is a very quirky and unique book. One of the best—and silliest—aspects of the story is probably the role of the narrator. The narrator is an active character in the story with a rather unique and enjoyable voice. I liked that part the best because it was a real risk taker, in my opinion, but it worked out very well and turned out to be very humorous.
When I read the description for the book and saw that it claimed to be humorous all on its own I was like… well you’d better impress me! And it definitely did.
There are many times the narrator makes fun of the silly clichés that both writers and readers fall into. In the beginning the main character is described as a boy—later named Farmboy—for the simple fact that it ‘makes sense’ for him to be a boy because of the content of the story and that he should be a boy specifically from a farm but if that offends fans they can take the time to place an invisible ‘S’ in front of ‘he’ and imagine him as a girl.
I had a ball reading that, just because of all the ‘equality’ and women’s rights going on in the news lately, I interpreted it as a goofy crack at the political drama. Just as I was reading that passage, I imagined some quack shouting ‘Why does it have to be a boy? Why can’t it be a girl?’ then the narrator said we could make it a girl if we wanted, no big deal—and I laughed for probably three minutes straight.
This book was full of that sort of silliness which I partially expected with a title like Bookland, in a place like Goodland, telling the story of a kid named Farmboy.
Brannan definitely gets points for creativity and originality but I can’t ignore the high quality of skill he demonstrated beneath the humor and goofiness. There was an air of sophistication throughout the book and even though it was silly, the writing itself was quite serious. The editing was wonderfully clean and the structure of the story was well planned. The characters were given very plain names, the world was not explicitly described, the setting was sometimes vague, but it was all deliberate and planned.
The narrator even admitted to as much, explaining that our imagination would be a key role while reading this piece and it certainly was. Reading through this book was like reading the adult version of a book written as cleverly as the great Dr. Seuss.
I will be honest and say I did not expect to enjoy this book as much as I did. I am so glad to have had the opportunity to read it and I’m proud to recommend it to others. Despite its quirkiness, Bookland dives into serious topics such as family, relationships, and even war. There is much to enjoy within its pages and there is no shortage of originality and quick witted humor. If you like fantasy, comedy, and books that read like an old fairy tale, this is certainly for you. I highly recommend it to readers of all ages and interests.