Maphead

Lesley Howarth, Author, Rob Day, Illustrator Candlewick Press (MA) $14.95 (160p) ISBN 978-1-56402-416-9
The 12-year-old hero of this darkly intriguing fantasy hails from the Subtle World, a parallel universe, and, like the other shadow beings there, he has strange powers. He can travel through time, erase or alter memory and move undetected among humans, and, as the title suggests, he can reproduce the layout of any terrain on his face and bald head. MapHead and his father come to earth in order to search for the boy's human mother, Kay, whose memory of the relationship that produced MapHead has been blanked out. Adopting the names Booth and Powers from a movie they see, Maphead and his father hide out in a greenhouse in an English village, where MapHead attends school. The details of Powers and Kay's liaison are noticeably sparse, and the story bogs down after MapHead finds his mother but must await Powers's permission to contact her. But Howarth creates a strong, genuine bond between MapHead and his father, and in describing the boy's longing for a relationship with his mother she adds fine emotional flourishes to her imaginative story. Ages 12-15. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 10/03/1994
Release date: 10/01/1994
Hardcover - 240 pages - 978-0-7636-0344-1
Prebound-Sewn - 153 pages - 978-0-606-09592-1
Paperback - 153 pages - 978-1-56402-858-7
Paperback - 160 pages - 978-1-84647-120-9
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