Posted by Venus on Monday, August 3, 2015
Labels: intermediate book review
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Release Date: November 4, 2014
Fin is completely forgettable. For reasons that no one can explain, no one can remember him. If he walks away for even a minute, the people he just introduced himself to will entirely forget that he exists. This is the key to him being a successful Master Thief of the Khaznot Key, although it is a very lonely existence. That is why he jumps at the chance to find a map that may be the key to finding his mother, the only person who has never forgotten about him.
When Marrill accidentally stumbles upon the magical Pirate Stream she is looking for a cure for her mother's cancer, not an adventure. Now she is stranded on a boat in magical waters looking for a map that can get her home again. She finds friends in a young ship's captain, an absentminded wizard, and a boy who is forgotten by everyone but her. Followed by a sinister figure they search for the pieces of the map that could either save them or destroy everything.
Now, I love a good fantasy and when it is a good book, longer is usually better. After all, who wants a good book to end. Of course, when a book drags, a long book can be exponentially longer. Such was the case with The Map to Everywhere. The pacing ebbed and flowed much like the Pirate Stream, sometimes moving along at a good clip only to drag at parts for dozens of pages. More frustrating still, there were a number of places where I wish more time had been spent explaining some of this weird fantasy world and a lot less time with Fin constantly worrying over being forgotten. Especially since all the set-up in the beginning was pointless seeing as most of the important stuff in the story took place somewhere else. Of course, this is a planned four book series so perhaps we shall return to it by the end of everything.
The characters themselves were rather interesting. Marrill is a rather normal girl lost within a world that is anything but. Like the straight man in a comedy. (straight meaning non-comedic) A character that is constantly forgotten brings a new spin to the amnesiac trope in fiction. From other reviews, there seems to have been some clever typography used in the print book that obviously didn't translate to audio.
Perhaps the greatest sin of this book through was that nothing was accomplished. The bad guys are still alive, Fin still hasn't found his mother and is still completely forgetable outside of Marrill's memory. Marrill is back where she started in the beginning, her mother is still ill, and although she is aware of magic she has no way of accessing the Pirate Stream.
I'm not sure if I am willing to devote myself to this entire series, because if nothing happens until book four, I just don't see the point.