One night when Liza went to bed, Patrick was her chubby, stubby, candy-grubbing and pancake-loving younger brother, who irritated and amused her both, and the next morning, when she woke up, he was not. In fact, he was quite, quite different.
When Liza’s brother, Patrick, changes overnight, Liza knows exactly what has happened: The spindlers have gotten to him and stolen his soul.
She knows, too, that she is the only one who can save him.
To rescue Patrick, Liza must go Below, armed with little more than her wits and a broom. There, she uncovers a vast world populated with talking rats, music-loving moles, greedy troglods, and overexcitable nids . . . as well as terrible dangers. But she will face her greatest challenge at the spindlers’ nests, where she encounters the evil queen and must pass a series of deadly tests–or else her soul, too, will remain Below forever.
From New York Times best-selling author Lauren Oliver comes a bewitching story about the reaches of loyalty, the meaning of love, and the enduring power of hope – Goodreads
Recently when I had no books out from the library (which just came to pay me back when all my holds came in at once) I decided to browse the new children’s book and this was on the shelf. I love Lauren Oliver’s writing. I love middle grade. I had to read it. And it was already on my goodreads TBR list, so really I had to.
In The Spindler’s, Oliver takes the typical fairy tale plot and makes it her own. At the center of the novel is Liza who one day wakes up and notices that her brother is no longer himself. Yes, he looks the same and yes, he acts the same but she knows in her heart of hearts that he is no longer her brother. Liza knows what happens. She knows that the Spindlers, spider creatures, have taken his soul. Her favorite babysitter Anna warned her about the Spindlers before she went to college. She must retrieve his soul or what is the shell of his body will disintegrate into dust. No pressure right?
While Liza tries to tell her parents that “hey now, something isn’t right here!” they of course don’t listen to her and she is the one who must save her brother. Liza takes the steps into saving her brother. She goes into the crawl space in the basement and of course ends up in a deep hole (of doom — as I called it throughout.) Liza is prepared though, Anna prepared her for this moment by telling her about Below. Liza also gets a tour guide throughout her time in the Below. Her tour guide Mirabella freaked me out, to put it nicely. Mirabella is a rat, who is the side of a person. She also wears clothing and a wig. The image of Mirabella still gives me the heeby-jeebies. Oliver is that good about her characters, I will give her that, they stick with you for quite some time.
While the journey Liza goes on is nice and quite fairy tale like it was not an Ashley book. I can see why others loved it, but I just did not.