Mennyms in the Wilderness

Sylvia Waugh, Author
Sylvia Waugh, Author Greenwillow Books $15 (254p) ISBN 978-0-688-13820-2
Reviewed on: 05/01/1995
Release date: 05/01/1995
Paperback - 272 pages - 978-0-380-72529-8
Prebound-Other - 227 pages - 978-0-606-08821-3
Paperback - 266 pages - 978-1-78295-433-0
Prebound-Sewn - 978-0-613-06312-8
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Waugh's second book is just as good as The Mennyms, and maybe even better-her characters, outsize rag dolls who have come to life, are a lot more believable than many fictional human families. Everything goes wrong at Brocklehurst Grove when the Mennyms once again receive a letter from Albert Pond (the real one, not the mystical Australian whose letter caused such trouble in the first book). Albert-an orphaned, ineffectual-seeming university lecturer-has been made aware (by the ghost of Aunt Kate, the Mennyms' creator and Albert's own great-great-aunt) of the town council's fiendish plans to raze the family home and to ``drive a motorway right through the house.'' In order to shield the Mennyms from curious human eyes, Albert takes them to a gloomy, isolated country house. Though they pine for Brocklehurst Grove, the Mennyms' new life is not without its adventures. A hilariously suspenseful episode in which Soobie, the blue Mennym, is held prisoner by a gang of boys who want him for their Guy Fawkes' Day bonfire allows Waugh to explore the relationship between dolls and humans with her own blend of delicious whimsy and rigorous logic. An odd, enchanting and thoroughly satisfying fantasy. Ages 10-up. (May)
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