The Wonderling

By Mira Bartók
Read by Simon Vance

9.32 Hours 09/26/2017 unabridged
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    ISBN: 9781536685671

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    ISBN: 9781536685640

In this extraordinary debut novel with its deft nod to Dickensian heroes and rogues, Mira Bartók tells the story of Arthur, a shy, fox-like foundling with only one ear and a desperate desire to belong, as he seeks his destiny. “Have you been unexpectedly burdened by a recently orphaned or unclaimed creature? Worry not! We have just the solution for you!” Welcome to the Home for Wayward and Misbegotten Creatures, an institution run by evil Miss Carbunkle, a cunning villainess who believes her terrified young charges exist only to serve and suffer. Part animal and part human, the groundlings toil in classroom and factory, forbidden to enjoy anything regular children have, most particularly singing and music. For the Wonderling, an innocent-hearted, one-eared, fox-like eleven-year-old with only a number rather than a proper name—a 13 etched on a medallion around his neck—it is the only home he has ever known. But unexpected courage leads him to acquire the loyalty of a young bird groundling named Trinket, who gives the Home’s loneliest inhabitant two incredible gifts: a real name—Arthur, like the good king in the old stories—and a best friend. Using Trinket’s ingenious invention, the pair escape over the wall and embark on an adventure that will take them out into the wider world and ultimately down the path of sweet Arthur’s true destiny. Richly imagined, with shimmering language, steampunk motifs, and gripping, magical plot twists, this high adventure fantasy is the debut novel of award-winning memoirist Mira Bartók and has already been put into development for a major motion picture.

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Summary

Summary

Winner of an AudioFile Earphones Award

In this extraordinary debut novel with its deft nod to Dickensian heroes and rogues, Mira Bartók tells the story of Arthur, a shy, fox-like foundling with only one ear and a desperate desire to belong, as he seeks his destiny.

“Have you been unexpectedly burdened by a recently orphaned or unclaimed creature? Worry not! We have just the solution for you!”

Welcome to the Home for Wayward and Misbegotten Creatures, an institution run by evil Miss Carbunkle, a cunning villainess who believes her terrified young charges exist only to serve and suffer.

Part animal and part human, the groundlings toil in classroom and factory, forbidden to enjoy anything regular children have, most particularly singing and music.

For the Wonderling, an innocent-hearted, one-eared, fox-like eleven-year-old with only a number rather than a proper name—a 13 etched on a medallion around his neck—it is the only home he has ever known. But unexpected courage leads him to acquire the loyalty of a young bird groundling named Trinket, who gives the Home’s loneliest inhabitant two incredible gifts: a real name—Arthur, like the good king in the old stories—and a best friend. Using Trinket’s ingenious invention, the pair escape over the wall and embark on an adventure that will take them out into the wider world and ultimately down the path of sweet Arthur’s true destiny.

Richly imagined, with shimmering language, steampunk motifs, and gripping, magical plot twists, this high adventure fantasy is the debut novel of award-winning memoirist Mira Bartók and has already been put into development for a major motion picture.

Editorial Reviews

Editorial Reviews

“Whatever your age, the adventures of part-human, part-animal Number 39 and Trinket in Mira Bartók’s steampunk otherworld are captivating. Add Simon Vance’s enthusiastic narration, and this is an audiobook to be cherished…Set in a world of horse-drawn carriages, insect-machines, and flying bicycles, as well as humans and groundlings, the tale offers Vance a chance to invent a myriad of voices and to support the action with his usual attentive pacing. The results will charm young and old alike. Winner of AudioFile Earphones Award.” AudioFile
“Bartók’s language is full of rich description and effulgent inventories…[and] the sense of enchantment in this imaginative adventure. Captivating and with great potential as a read-aloud.” Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“Arthur’s Dickensian steampunk world is richly imagined and gorgeously described…Arthur’s story of friendship, hope, and heroics will delight adventure seekers…Younger readers not yet ready to tackle a long novel on their own will still be enthralled by the story in shared reading or readaloud.” Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books (starred review)
“A stellar new contribution to fantasy that should find a place in every middle-grade collection.” School Library Journal (starred review)

Reviews

Reviews

Author

Author Bio: Mira Bartók

Mira Bartók is a Chicago-born artist and writer and the author of numerous books for children, including a New York Times bestseller, The Memory Palace: A Memoir, which won the 2011 National Book Critics Circle Award for Autobiography. She is a spokesperson for TransCultural Exchange, an international arts organization that seeks to foster greater understanding between world cultures through artistic collaboration.

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Details

Details

Available Formats : Digital Download, CD
Category: Fiction/Fantasy
Runtime: 9.32
Audience: Children (8–12)
Language: English