Nicole's Reviews > The Mysterious Edge of the Heroic World

The Mysterious Edge of the Heroic World by E.L. Konigsburg
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May 07, 09

bookshelves: abandoned
Read in May, 2009

I abandoned this book once I knew for sure where the plot was going. I haven't liked Konigsburg since Silent to the Bone, and even then, I had to suspend a lot of disbelief. What's happened to this author? It seems as though her eye for story and style is caught in the 60's and 70's, but she tries to edge her work to a more mature level by adding the odd profanity or adult situation. What's hard about criticizing her this sharply is that the prose is delicate...I'd teach writing from many passages in this book. The characters are interesting (for the most part), too. The problem is, this isn't a book for any particular audience (kids, teens, adults) because it's written like a contemporary adult book starring kids, but still trying to throw in stuff kids might like. I'd agree with other reviewers that Konigsburg is getting a "bye" from her publishers because of her name. She will ALWAYS sell to libraries (I bet almost every library in the country has this book on the shelves) and to do-gooder adults who give children's books to kids without having read them themselves. For those of us who still read her and believe in her, however, we're all in our 20's, 30's and beyond...we were children of the 70's and 80's, mostly, and we remember how timeless Claudia and Jamie were and how fun visiting Jericho Tel was. But we had to have seen this coming. Father's Arcane Daughter, a great story, was made even greater by shifting the focus to Caroline in the Hallmark movie and broadening the audience to adults. Maybe she's always written for adults and we just never noticed it...but since her "kids" have all grown up, hopefully she can be convinced to just write a book for Gen X and have done with it.
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