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Into the Labyrinth
A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this book.
What parents need to know
What's the story?
At the end of The Great Good Thing, Princess Sylvie and her fellow book characters were written into a new book. Now their book is a bestseller, and about to be uploaded onto the Internet. Since they must perform any time a Reader is reading, they are harried and stressed, so much so that Sylvie asks Lily, the Writer, to add a character who can help them. Enter Rosetta Stein, a yoga instructor, who helps them learn to cope with stress.
But being uploaded onto the Net not only brings more stress, it also brings a computer virus that is eating away at the Story. So Sylvie, along with Rosetta and the girl with the dark blue eyes, must venture into the corridors of the Net to find the source of the virus, and destroy it.
Is it any good?
Roderick Townley takes the intriguing premise of The Great Good Thing into cyberspace, with mixed results. The story of a fictional character moving easily book, dream, and now computer is fascinating. But the logical holes in the concept have grown wider and more noticeable.
What do the characters do when more than one person reads at the same time? The words seem to be physical objects over which they can trip, yet the story seems to be set in the illustrations. And some of the computer details, such as firewalls and cookies, seem to be backward. The kind of bright, book-loving children who will have wanted to read this sequel may be annoyed by the inconsistencies even as they are enthralled by the idea, but this provides fodder for thought and conversation.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about nature and the interaction of stories, readers, authors, and characters. Do you think different readers view the same book the same way? What characters have you grown especially fond of? Why? Are they characters that seem like you or people you could relate to?