Title: The Real Boy
Author: Anne Ursu
Publisher: Walden Pond Press/HarperCollins
Pub Date: September 24, 2013
Rec. Age Level: 8-12
More by author: Breadcrumbs
Anne Ursu, beloved author of Breadcrumbs, gives readers another magical tale of adventure and heart with The Real Boy.
Oscar is the shop boy to the most powerful magician in the Barrow, an ancient forest that surrounds a perfect city that was once almost decimated by a plague decades before. Oscar, who was brought to the Barrow from a far away land devoid of magic, spends his days gathering and preparing ingredients for the magician’s potions and spells, avoiding the magician’s assistant, a bully who spends his days looking for new ways to pick on Oscar, and talking to his many cats who understand him when no else seems to. Oscar likes simple things, structure, and quiet, but his small rebellion is his love of books, which he sneaks secretly from the magician’s library.
When an unknown monster begins terrorizing the Barrow and the children of the perfect city within its protection begin falling ill, Oscar must step out from the comforting shadow of life and face his fears to save day.
A gorgeous story about belonging, believing in yourself, and the true meaning of magic, The Real Boy is a fairy tale destined to earn a place in readers’ hearts.
“I think if you’ll look around, my boy,” he said gently, “you’ll find that no one is quite right. But we all do the best we can.”