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Into the Labyrinth Hardcover – October 1, 2002

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 10 and up
  • Hardcover: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Atheneum/Richard Jackson Books; 1st ed edition (October 1, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0689846150
  • ISBN-13: 978-0689846151
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 5.1 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,802,871 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Princess Sylvie and her family, characters in the out-of-print storybook introduced in The Great Good Thing, are overjoyed when their tale is republished. This sequel, Into the Labyrinth by Roderick Townley, explores the special challenges and unimaginable threats faced by the characters when they are uploaded onto the World Wide Web. Ages 10-up.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal

Grade 4-8-The premise of this novel is that readers don't read a story, they hear a story as it is acted out by its characters, and "if the characters aren't there, living and suffering on the page before you, nothing makes sense." In this sequel to The Great Good Thing (Atheneum, 2001), Princess Sylvie's adventure story has been republished, and she and the other characters have to adjust to their new popularity as Sylvie's quest to do one "great good thing" before her marriage is repeated to reader after reader. After their story is uploaded to the Internet, the characters have to adjust to their new digital existence, and they start experiencing "wordpools," holes and changes in their story that endanger their existence. The protagonist ventures into the World Wide Web, visiting a variety of sites where she is offered real but tasteless cookies, to find and confront the force responsible for the wordpools. While minor characters remain flat, Sylvie is an appealing, thoughtful, and involving heroine, pulling the fast-paced plot to its satisfying conclusion. Like William J. Brooke's Teller of Tales (HarperTrophy, 1995), this story looks at the possible stories behind what we read, offering a picture of a world where seeing a screen saver or a scroll bar from the inside seems logical. Townley provides enough background to help readers unfamiliar with the first book while not distracting from his story.
Beth L. Meister, Queens Borough Public Library, Flushing, NY
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Laura O. Brokaw on November 22, 2002
Format: Hardcover
After reading and loving "A Great Good Thing," I was hoping for this sequel to be as well-written and charming. I was disappointed. It features the same wonderful characters, princess Sylvie and the "girl with the dark blue eyes," as well as the king and queen and all the other characters, but the plot doesn't hold together nearly as well. The author inserts a new character -- a yoga instructor named Rosetta-- into "the story" as an assistant shepherdess, and all the talk of energy projection lines and finding one's center is way above the heads of its 9-12 audience.
Instead of books and their readers, it tackles the problem of the Internet and its viewers -- that is, "the story" is published online. Instead of a little brother who is a pyromaniac and destroys the book in "A Great Good Thing," it seems to deal with a boy who spreads computer viruses -- but this part isn't very clear.
The story borders more on the zany type of puns and Alice-in Wonderland type plot, -- than than the clever, funny and fantastic but logical and believeable plot devices of the original. Characters from other stories wander into the text. Internet "cookies" look like lemon cookies, but are tasteless. Someone steals the "d's" in one paragraph. Entire lines of dialouge disappear, arrows become roses. Persumably all these thing happen due to a computer virus -- but there is no clear character behind or logical reason for the problems. The book suggests a little boy is to blame, but unlike the clear difficulties in the first book -- escaping a burning book and not being forgotten upon the death of the reader -- the villian is murky and there is not a logical direction to the problems. The mysterious villian is defeated eventually -- but you never do learn how or why the virus happened. And by the end of the book, you don't particulary care.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on May 11, 2007
Format: Paperback
Although the first book, The Great Good Thing, may have been better in some ways, this was still quite a good book! All the same characters from the first book are here plus new people. The usual characters continue in their roles in this book and do more and more. In Into the Labyrinth, the Writer puts Sylvie's story on the Internet. That's when their story gets a virus.

Just as they start getting used to climbing down the page, instead of across as in a book, they find that for some strange reason letters go missing, and words get mixed up. When Sylvie learns what a virus is from a friend and finds a way outside of the story, she becomes determined to solve the problem.

Into the Labyrinth is a creative, imaginative book!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on March 21, 2007
Format: Paperback
First I must say Roderick Townley is a writing genius. However this is not his best work. In the first one he still doesn't make it completly understandable. In this one I think he isn't quite staying in the same place first one. I think he lose's topic a bit too much and tries to make it better than the first one. He fails in the attempt. I would recommend the book just don't expect a movie anytime soon.
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