The purchase of this book was sealed with the promise of the dusk jacket: "For fans of Roald Dahl and Neil Gaiman comes a tale at turns haunting, moving, and darkly funny (and best if read with a flashlight under the bed sheets--shhh!)." And the dust jacket did not disappoint. This was a lucky, browsing find.
And thus began my journey with Olive, an eleven-year-old who moves into a spooky old mansion on Linden Street. Olive feels as if she doesn't belong, as if she's ignored, as if she doesn't matter. Until a mysterious pair of old-fashioned spectacles changes her perception of all things Olive. These spectacles allow her to step into another world, Elsewhere, a world that is being preserved until...
Elsewhere is the creation of one man - the mean man, the dark man, the scary man - through paintings. Yes, that is correct. He has created an alternate world with his paint brush, a world he controls and a world he hopes to return to one day. At every turn Olive is being "tricked," a master plan to bring back an old master and a claim to what he believes his rightfully his, the mansion (who cares that he's been dead for a while). Can Olive learn to trust in herself in order to save the world? Okay, not literally the world, but at least the spooky old mansion she and her parents call home.
Jacqueline West's book one, The Books of Elsewhere: The Shadows, will leave readers hungry for more Olive, more Morton, and more reading "with a flashlight under the bed sheets." But be very quiet, HE is waiting, HE is watching, HE is listening - for you.