Synopses & Reviews
From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Magicians comes a must-read, wholly original middle-grade debut perfect for fans of The Chronicles of Narnia and Roald Dahl
Dear Uncle Herbert,
You've never met me, but I'm your niece Kate, and since it is my birthday tomorrow and you are super-rich could you please send me a present?
Kate and her younger brother Tom lead dull, uninteresting lives. And if their dull, uninteresting parents are anything to go by, they don't have much to look forward to. Why can't Kate have thrilling adventures and save the world the way people do in books? Even her 11th birthday is shaping up to be mundane — that is, until her mysterious and highly irresponsible Uncle Herbert, whom she's never even met before, surprises her with the most unexpected, exhilarating, inappropriate birthday present of all time: a colossal steam locomotive called the Silver Arrow.
Kate and Tom's parents want to send it right back where it came from. But Kate and Tom have other ideas — and so does the Silver Arrow — and soon they're off to distant lands along magical rail lines in the company of an assortment of exotic animals who, it turns out, can talk. With only curiosity, excitement, their own resourcefulness and the thrill of the unknown to guide them, Kate and Tom are on the adventure of a lifetime...and who knows? They just might end up saving the world after all.
This thrilling fantasy adventure will not only entertain young readers but inspire them to see the beautiful, exciting, and precious world around them with new eyes.
"I loved it. Completely unpredictable and completely charming. A perfect book to cuddle up with and savor — and even better to read aloud with someone you love." Adam Gidwitz, bestselling and Newbery honor-winning author of A Tale Dark and Grimm and The Inquisitor's Tale
"Grossman's gorgeous middle-grade debut is vivid and amusing...it's a world all its own." Booklist (Starred Review)
"Both cozy and inspiring, this eco-fable conveys both grim truths and a defiant call to action." Kirkus (Starred Review)
About the Author
Lev Grossman is the author of five novels including the #1 New York Times bestselling Magicians trilogy, which has been published in 30 countries. A TV adaptation of the trilogy is now in its fifth season as the top-rated show on Syfy. Grossman is also an award-winning journalist who spent 15 years as the book critic and lead technology writer at Time magazine, where he published more than 20 cover stories. In addition he has written for the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Wired, The Believer, The Village Voice, NPR, Salon, Slate, and Buzzfeed, among many others. He lives in New York City with his wife and three children.