Tuesday, June 19, 2018

The Book of Gold

The Book of Gold. Bob Staake. 2017. Random House. 40 pages. [Source: Review copy]

First sentence: Isaac Gutenberg wasn't interested in much. Not in toys, not in the funny papers, not even in his pet goldfish. His parents tried to tempt him with books.

Premise/plot: Isaac's parents LOVE to read; their son doesn't. They try taking him to the New York Public Library, but that field trip doesn't quite go as planned. He's just as bored by books there as he is at home. But...on that same trip they go to a shop. His parents are looking for a gift. A shopkeeper approaches Isaac and his life will never be the same...
"Tell me, child," she whispered. "Have you heard about The Book of Gold?" Isaac shook his head. "There is a legend," she explained, "that somewhere in the world there is one very special book that's just waiting to be discovered. It will look like any other book, but it holds all the answers to every question ever asked, and when it is opened, it turns to solid gold."
Seeing that he's become curious, she wishes him good luck. "You'll need patience and fortitude to find the Book of Gold!"

Isaac spends his life opening books. Soon it's just not opening books...but DEVOURING books as he reads them one after another. His curiosity grows and grows with each passing year. Will he ever discover The Book of Gold?

My thoughts: I liked this one. It is a bit text-heavy so perhaps it's best for older readers who still enjoy picture books. (In my opinion, one never ever ever outgrows picture books. There's a picture book perfect for each and every age.) The theme is timeless--books are magical--but the story is set in a specific time and place. Isaac, when we first meet him, is a child in 1935 in New York.

Text: 5 out of 5
Illustrations: 3 out of 5
Total: 8 out of 10

© 2018 Becky Laney of Young Readers

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