Like most (strange) 7 year olds this opening line was enough to draw Ben into The Imaginary, a world of love, loss, new starts, old endings and imagination.
Amanda, like most children has a best friend, Rudger, She found him one day in her wardrobe and he becomes her companion, there for all her adventures, dangers and challengers. Amanda's mother is quite accepting of Rudger, her friends less so. You see only Amanda can see him, he doesn't exist. At least Amanda thinks only she can see him until one day Mr Bunting arrives informing her he hunts imaginaries and knows about Rudger. With the rumour being that Mr Bunting eats them Rudger finds himself alone and running for his imaginary life.
|Rudger was being forgotten. He was disappearing. Evaporating.|
He walked into the shade of a tree and touched its thick patchwork bark with his fingertip. It looked rough, gnarled, hard, but it was like marshmallow.
But can a boy who isn't there survive without a friend to dream him up? What happens to our imagainary friends from when we are little when we are too old to rememebr them any more?
The books is complemented by some of the best illustrations I've seen in a while by Emily Gravett, they help bring the story alive, and not just black and white but colours to bring imagination to life.
They say never judge a book by it's cover but I do, if I don't like the cover or it doesn't attract my attention I won't bother even reading the blurb on the back. It was also the first thing Ben commented on when he opened the parcel.
Take a look - even the chapter numbers are beautiful.
A lovely story, perfect for children 8+.
|It wasn't going fast, just pootling around the car park, but sometimes slow is fast enough.|
Disclaimer: We were sent us a copy of The Imaginary in return for an honest review.