Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Book: 100 Cupboards

Wilson, N.D. (2007). 100 cupboards. New York, NY: Random House, Inc

Genre:  Fantasy

Reading/Interest Level: Ages 10+

Similar Titles: Dandelion Fire, The Chesnut King

Plot: Henry York's life gets interesting when he goes to live with his aunt and uncle in a small Kansas town. He meets his cousins – all girls - Penny, Henrietta, and Anastasia. Usually, Henry is off at boarding school while his parents are traveling around the world – unfortunately, while on a biking trip across South America, his parents have disappeared, which is why he is with family. Henry is put in the attic room and while there he hears some noises coming from the wall… which piques his interest…soon he realizes that there's a knob sticking out of the wall! Since finding a knob in the wall is not a normal occurrence, Henry starts to scrape off more of the plaster wall and finds an assortment of cupboards. His cousin Henrietta catches him in the act and wants to know what he is doing… so what is he doing? Henry has a chance to explore the worlds that are inside the many cupboards in the wall…some are interesting, while others are downright scary! Is what these kids are doing safe? Surely opening all of these cupboards is just inviting something bad to happen.

Personal Thoughts: I thought this book was very original. The story is very well written and includes a little bit of humor. The book shows how Henry learns to make friends and learns about baseball. The relationship between Henry and Henrietta is complicated because of Henrietta's tendency to do things her way, often causing trouble.
There may be some darker fantasy parts that would make kids under ten a little bothered by what they are reading – like the fact that a hand is cut off (off page).

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