There are only three things that matter to twelve-year-old Alice Alexis Queensmeadow: Mother, who wouldn't miss her; magic and color, which seem to elude her; and Father, who always loved her. The day Father disappears from Ferenwood he takes nothing but a ruler with him. But it's been almost three years since then, and Alice is determined to find him. She loves her father even more than she loves adventure, and she's about to embark on one to find the other.
But bringing Father home is no small matter. In order to find him she'll have to travel through the mythical, dangerous land of Furthermore, where down can be up, paper is alive, and left can be both right and very, very wrong. Her only companion is a boy named Oliver whose own magical ability is based in lies and deceit--and with a liar by her side in a land where nothing is as it seems, it will take all of Alice's wits (and every limb she's got) to find Father and return home to Ferenwood in one piece. On her quest to find Father, Alice must first find herself--and hold fast to the magic of love in the face of loss.
Tahereh Mafi has truly created a magical world within the pages of Furthermore. This book was so much fun to read. It flowed from one page to the next seamlessly, and I couldn’t bring myself to put it down. It made me want to actually see the world that Alice lives in, to travel to Furthermore with her and discover its many secret.
The thing that impressed me most about Furthermore was that it made me want to see more. More of the places, more of the people, more of the creatures. Just more of anything! I love when a book draws me in past what is written on the pages and makes me want to unearth any other tidbits about its setting that I can, when it makes me want to read more than just the focus of this single story. Furthermore could have a million stories to tell and this is just one of them. It’s easy to liken this book to Alice in Wonderland, as it’s whimsical and the main character is named Alice. But it really put me more in the mind of The Neverending Story by Michael Ende. Mafi created this immense world and did such a fantastic job of telling just one of it’s stories, but I immediately wanted more! Personally, I think that means that she did her job as an author really, really well.
Going back to the whimsy of Furthermore, I definitely have a soft spot for anything whimsical, magical, fantastical, etc. But so many times I’ve seen writers shoot for those things and fall short, so I had to be skeptical when I started this book. Turns out, my skepticism was unneeded. Mafi crafted a book that is so much fun to read, full of it’s own unique quirks. The main character, Alice, is her own brand of lovely. She was a blast to read and so easy to love.
I haven’t a clue whether or not more books are planned in the world of Furthermore, but I very much hope there are. Worst case, this book is so easy and fun to read that I know I’ll be picking it up again and again when I need to escape to a fun and beautiful place. I highly recommend this to everyone, no matter who you are. Furthermore’s message is one that everyone can appreciate, and people of all ages need to enjoy a little of the magic is provides.