Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978

The Lost Boy

The Lost Boy

Fall 2013 Fiction
Ages: 8 - 12 yrs.
Author: Greg Ruth
Publisher: Scholastic
ISBN: 9780439823319
Hardcover Price: $24.99

Nate has just moved to a new house, in a new town, and he's not happy about it. He gets to pick out his own bedroom, but for the most part his circumstances seem lonely and dark. This is punctuated by the black-and-white art of this graphic novel.

Immediately, he discovers a collection of old tapes and a recorder beneath a floorboard in his room. The adventure starts fast. Nate meets his surly neighbor, Tabitha, who quickly warms to him when they discover they can see all of the same things—like the weird Buglings and talking doll.

The tapes are forty years old and from a boy their age named Walt. The recordings lead the two of them to a forest at the edge of town, which then transforms to another world: The Kingdom. It's a creepy and dangerous place that lured the mysterious Walt and is ruled by oversized insects and assorted other menacing creatures. The fantasy element, and overall eeriness of the story is set off by Ruth's dark black-and-white artwork.

A slight, but interesting story, with very detailed art, Greg Ruth's The Lost Boy would make a quick and spooky read for a gloomy afternoon.

Teresa DiFalco   ©2013 Parents' Choice
Teresa DiFalco is an award-winning ghostwriter, writer, and mother in Vancouver, Washington. She's been a contributing editor for Parents' Choice for over ten years. She's a strong speller, a menace at badminton, and makes a decent soufflé.

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