The Phantom Tollbooth - Norton Juster

He walked across the room and dusted the car off carefully. Then, taking the map and rule book with him, he hopped in and, for lack of anything better to do, drove slowly up to the tollbooth. As he deposited his coin and rolled past he remarked wistfully, "I do hope this is an interesting game, otherwise the afternoon will be so terribly dull."

The Phantom Tollbooth is one of my favorite kids' books. I got my copy, which is completely falling apart and probably needs to be replaced, on my twelfth birthday, and I just had the opportunity to read it to Ridley.

Milo is the sort of boy who is bored of everything. "Wherever he was he wished he were somewhere else, and when he got there he wondered why he'd bothered." Nothing was interesting to him, and everything a waste of time. Then one day he arrived at home to discover a large package waiting for him: a toy tollbooth.

Driving through it suddenly transported him to the Kingdom of Wisdom: Dictionopolis, Digitopolis, the Valley of Sound and the Forest of Sight, and many other locations. It's a fantastic journey filled with the most unusual characters. Juster proves himself a master of wordplay and finds fascination in nearly everything. More importantly, his fascination is contagious, drawing in the reader even as Milo becomes more aware of how much he's been missing all his life.

There are definitely parts that went over Ridley's head, but she understood enough of it, and I can't wait until she's older so we can read it again. Maybe I'll even get her her own copy.

Fed to jonathan's brain | May 20, 2010 | Comments (0)


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