Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Book Review: The Tilting House by Tom Llewellyn

✰✰✰✰ After living in a cramped apartment for years, the five member Peshik family decides to buy a house. However, the only one that Mr. & Mrs. Peshik can afford comes with a few eccentricities like floors that are tilted 3 degrees and a dimmer switch that makes the house invisible. The entire town knows that strange things happen at the house known as Tilton House.

Follow along with Josh and Aaron Peshik as they explore Tilton House and all of its fantastical mysteries. There's the talking rat, magical grow powder, a locked box with a miniature key, an old journal, and a mysterious black sack. The fact that every single wall in the house is covered with strange scribbles and equations made by the previous owner adds to the puzzle that is the house itself.

Additionally there's no shortage of peculiar neighbors like the Talker, the old man who lives across the street and talks to no one in particular all day long. Then there's the Purple Door Man, who's suspected of pilfering everything in the neighborhood from bicycles to soccer balls. And we can't forget Lola, the neighbor girl who helps rescue Aaron from an appointment with death. As each mystery is revealed, the secret of Tilton House and its eccentric creator is unraveled. And with a little help from Grandpa, the boys uncover a surprise twist ending. Everyone who reads this book is sure to find something intriguing.

The Bottom Line: The Tilting House is a fast-paced and entertaining adventure story. Throw in a few quirky neighbors and mysterious events and you have a winner. Each chapter is like a self-contained short story that can stand alone; however, the chapters are then seamlessly woven together to form a whole. Cool black and white illustrations by Sarah Watts add to the intrigue of this book. Appropriate for kids in middle school; however, sensitive readers may be troubled by the death of a rat in the beginning.

Details: The Tilting House by Tom Llewellyn. Illustrations by Sarah Watts. Published by Tricycle Press in 2010. 160 p. ISBN: 978-1-58246-350-6

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