Summary From Goodreads:
For as long as Lottie Fiske can remember, the only people who seem to care about her have been her best friend, Eliot, and the mysterious letter-writer who sends her birthday gifts. But now strange things and people are arriving on the island Lottie calls home, and Eliot’s getting sicker, with a disease the doctors have given up trying to cure. Lottie is helpless, useless, powerless.
And then a door opens in the apple tree.
Follow Lottie down through the apple roots to another world—a world of magic both treacherous and beautiful—in pursuit of the impossible: a cure for the incurable, a use for the useless, and protection against the pain of loss.
I really enjoyed this originally fun book. At the beginning, I noticed very vague similarities to Alice In Wonderland, which made it super fun. At first, I wasn’t that into the premise of the book, but all the creativity and characters drew me in almost immediately. I have to admit, the pacing was a bit iffy at times, but it didn’t really effect the overall story. And the world building was spectacular. It was confusing at first, but I caught on quick. I thought it was super original about the five senses, where each character had a sense that was extra strong. (TBH, I forgot the proper names so that’s why I’m vaguely explaining this).
K.E. Ormsbee does a great job of writing lovable characters. Over the course of the story, I got more and more attached to the characters I now know and love. At the start, Lottie seemed immature and selfish. But she quickly overcame that, and I think I’ll see a lot of future development for her in the next book. Also, I love love love Fife and Ollie. Their characters were super goofy (especially Fife), and I think they had more depth than Lottie.
Overall & Recommendations:
This was such a quirky, middle grade read, and I’m so glad I won a giveaway for this book. The plot was original, and the world building was such a delight to read about. And the characters were so likable, I can’t wait to read more about them. I definitely recommend this to 3rd+.
“Eliot isn’t like anyone I know. He’s just Eliot. And even if he isn’t refined, he knows how to live. That’s why I’m not about to let him die.”
“You might have a little trouble waking me,” Fife told Adelaide. “I’m a very sound sleeper.”
“No worries,” Adelaide said sweetly. “I’ll just kick your face till you come to.”