Pan’s Labyrinth: The Labyrinth of the Faun

Guillermo del Toro and Cornelia Funke, illus. by Allen Williams. Harper/Tegen, $19.99 (272p) ISBN 978-0-06-241446-5
In this dark fantasy, Funke (the Inkheart trilogy) revisits Pan’s Labyrinth, del Toro’s acclaimed 2006 film in which a girl undergoes a series of fairy tale–inspired tasks set against the backdrop of 1944 Spain. Ofelia, 13, must adjust to her new surroundings after she and her pregnant mother move to the north of Spain to live with her new stepfather, the evil Capitan Vidal, who is obsessed with hunting down local resistance fighters. Then, the mysterious Faun visits Ofelia and informs her that she is the long-missing daughter of the Underworld’s king. In order to return home, she must prove her worth by completing three tasks. The film’s storyline interwove Ofelia’s challenges in a mythical labyrinth with scenes in the real world, and Funke’s expansion reveals further backstory through a series of fairy tale vignettes touching upon relevant people, items, and themes, including the enigmatic Faun who sets everything in motion and Capitan Vidal’s prized razor. Fans of the film will enjoy this in-depth exploration and reimagining of the source material, while newcomers will have no trouble getting into the story, though its dark themes and occasional gruesome scenes aren’t for the fainthearted. Ages 14–up. (July)
Reviewed on : 06/20/2019
Release date: 07/01/2019
Genre: Children's
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