Synopsis (from Goodreads)
Released: 7th of June 2016
Ever since his mother died, 11-year-old Owen has felt lost. He's drifting apart from his dad, his grades are dropping, and the only thing keeping him sane are the soccer trials coming up.
Then, in the middle of school one day, he is sucked out of real life and thrown into a desolate alternative world, a largely deserted wasteland where a menacing storm of Darkness plagues the city, threatening his life and the lives of the people who dwell there.
Terrifying as this new world is, Owen recognizes it--his dad is an author, and this is the setting of his new novel. Fueled by his grief over the loss of his mom, Owen's dad has conjured a world so real and so fraught that Owen is transported to it every time his dad sets pen to paper. And he has to live out every word in the story.
But each jump devours chunks of his real life. Owen misses days of school, and even a key soccer game that threatens his chances of having a shot at appearing in the tryouts at all. Owen desperately wants these events to stop, but doesn't want to plunge his dad any further into the well of unhappiness that threatens to drown them both.
With social services threatening to ship Owen off to his aunt's house and his school career spiraling out of control, what if finishing the story and battling the Darkness is the only way Owen can save himself . . . and his dad?
What I Have to Say
This book was such a lovely surprise. It was such a complex and beautiful story about grief, suffering and the road to recovery all interspersed with an intriguing Dystopia written by his father.
I really enjoyed the chapters with the story in. It was well constructed and the presence of Owen made it funny and a refreshing take on Dystopia. I was almost disappointed when Owen woke up back in the real world, but it was that backdrop of trying to help his father recover from the death of his mother that made it as special as it was.
The thing that made this book so special was the uniqueness of the idea. I've read plenty of books about people going into stories, but none of them have had the same grief and desire to help his dad that made it more than just the basic story.
This book is definitely something that I'll remember for a long time.