I am in the middle of Kage Baker's fantastic Company series but was also curious about what else she had written. I found this one that sounded interesting and then stuck it on the old TBR shelf to get dusty. Well, at the end of the latest Readathon, I started getting burned out at the end of the night and the books on my stack didn't seem like the right reads for the moment so I browsed my TBR and the 180 small pages of this one seemed perfect. Then I opened it and the first thing I saw was this --
Wow! I read The Hotel Under the Sand with delight and joy. It's wonderful, wacky and spooky and serious and FUN. It also strikes me as utterly original (which is quite rare). In fact -- although this is something one should always say with some caution -- it wouldn't surprise me if it turned out to be a classic and went on down the ages along with Alice and Oz and the very few others that have become immortal.
-- Diana Wynne Jones, author of Howl's Moving Castle
What could possibly make me more excited about this book? NOTHING.
So, did it live up to DWJ's excessive praise? Short answer, yes. It was possibly one of the sweetest, funnest, most original chapter books I've ever read. There's one of the best ghosts I've ever read about, the coolest magical setting, and a super awesome treasure hunt. I mean, it starts with a girl washing up on an island and she immediately finds herself water and food and makes her own shelter! She's not helpless! It also made my heart so happy with its friendships and found family. I have no idea why this book hasn't found its audience yet but I'm going to work on changing that.
Sharing the secret of this island gem,