Mia (Parentheses Enthusiast)’s review of The Phantom Tollbooth > Likes and Comments

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Jess ❈Harbinger of Blood-Soaked Rainbows❈ Beautiful review, Mia. This is also one of my top top top favorite books.


Anya (~on a semi-hiatus~) Gorgeous review, Mia! As a fellow word lover, your review resonated so well with me. <3


Mia (Parentheses Enthusiast) @Jess Thank you, isn't it such a great book? It has such a special place in my heart.

@Anya Thanks! There's always just been something about words, spoken or written, that I've loved, and I'm glad you share that same love :)

@Fatty Thank you! If I knew the Latin root for "fact," I totally would ;)


message 4: by Anne (new)

Anne Just beautiful, Mia :)


Mia (Parentheses Enthusiast) Thanks, Anne :)


message 6: by Anuradha (new)

Anuradha I haven't read this book before, and now I need to look for it. Amazing review Mia! :)


Mia (Parentheses Enthusiast) Thanks, Anuradha! I highly recommend it. It's a book for adults as well as kids, and you'll understand all the wordplay and hidden meanings that eluded me when I first read it, and which took me several rereads to truly appreciate.


message 8: by Anuradha (new)

Anuradha Mia (Parentheses Enthusiast) wrote: "Thanks, Anuradha! I highly recommend it. It's a book for adults as well as kids, and you'll understand all the wordplay and hidden meanings that eluded me when I first read it, and which took me se..."

This could be my " book recommended by a friend." Again, borrowed from your list. :D


message 9: by Drew (new)

Drew Graham Very interesting review. I admit that this book didn't exactly blow me away, but I think that was due to years of talk and hype and finally reading it for myself, and I imagine if I had read it as a kid I might have enjoyed it a little more. I also love words and letters (I have a similarly odd mental game where I mentally alphabetize the letters in words, which has become something of a family joke/game in its heyday), so I totally get it, this one just didn't really do it for me. Maybe if I read it again with my kids in a few years it will mean more to me as a reader and linguaphile.


Mia (Parentheses Enthusiast) I feel like this is the sort of book that's not conducive to hype, and I can definitely see how it would be underwhelming if you psyched yourself up too much. Hopefully your kids enjoy it if you decide to share it with them! :)


message 11: by Michelle (new)

Michelle I may not have enjoyed the book *quite* as much as you, but I did enjoy reading your wonderful review! My first book was a dictionary, and I would follow my parents around all day saying words and getting them to tell me what they meant (and checking if they were right), or reading the definitions and getting them to guess the word!

As others have said, I'm looking forwards to reading TPT with my son - I'm sure seeing it again through the eyes of a child will bring a whole new dimension to it!

Stay weird!! xx


message 12: by Mia (Parentheses Enthusiast) (last edited Mar 21, 2016 12:07PM) (new)

Mia (Parentheses Enthusiast) Michelle wrote: "I may not have enjoyed the book *quite* as much as you, but I did enjoy reading your wonderful review! My first book was a dictionary, and I would follow my parents around all day saying words and ..."

Thanks so much, Michelle! I also had a fascination with dictionaries- my mom had this enormous leather-bound tome bigger than my torso as a child, which I loved flipping through. The pages were extremely thin and the title was stamped in gold ink... I have fond memories of that book :)

I hope your son enjoys The Phantom Tollbooth and it makes me so happy that parents can continue a great tradition.


message 13: by Tiana (new)

Tiana Hadnt Thank you for this review!!! I have always loved this book. I just listened to it on audio and several of the little lessons were just what I needed to be reminded of.
I find that most of the people who love this book really get it. There's wordplay, yes, and fun stuff. But I think that at its heart, it's a story meant to teach us how to find beauty and fun and intrigue in the world around us. How sometimes, all the adventure we need is right outside the door, or even on a shelf in the same room. As Milo learns, we learn with him.
For those who don't enjoy it, I think largely that they are missing the point of the book. It's not meant to be a typical fantasy story where you get amazing descriptions that are paragraphs long about the world they're in. It's meant to be a book about people. And I think there are tons of things in here that you can't really grasp unless you're and adult or an older teen. I learned a lot from re-reading it as an adult and I'm looking forward to
reading it again.


Mia (Parentheses Enthusiast) Thanks for your lovely comment, Tiana! I agree that there are some things you can only really understand as you reread- I read The Phantom Tollbooth as a child and again as a precocious tween, but I've not read it recently. It's one of the sacred few books I call my "armchair books", as they're the equivalent of a favourite armchair- comfortable, known, beloved, classic. As I've gotten older my armchair books change (currently they're fantasies like The Hobbit & The Lies of Locke Lamora and sprawling odysseys like The Shadow of the Wind), but it's like Neil Gaiman said: "Books you read when you're the right age never really leave you." TPT is, and always will be, one of those books for me :)


Emer (A Little Haze) Oh what a truly brilliant review Mia! You've made me all sentimental and emotional thinking about my own childhood spent reading and about the books that meant a lot to me. I must confess I've never heard of this particular book, I guess it never made its way to my small town library when I was little (because I think I read practically every child's book in my small local library back then!) but I will definitely seek it out now. Gorgeous review :)))


Mia (Parentheses Enthusiast) Thanks, Emer! I was always in the town library as a kid too, I spent a lot of weekends sitting on a stool tucked away in a corner, reading books like The Phantom Tollbooth (which I eventually bought). We also had a school library at my elementary school and everyone was allowed to check out two books every Friday- one picture book and one chapter book- but I loved chapter books so much that I cajoled my way into the librarian's good graces so that she'd let me check out more on the down-low. XD


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