Wednesday, 4 April 2012


By Michael Ende
445 pp. Puffin. £7.99. (Ages 9 and up)


Rating: ? Stars

I haven't finished “The Neverending Story” and I never will because it never ends. I got this book for my ninth birthday because I read too quickly and my parents thought this might keep me company for a while. I started to read this book because I had watched the movie. The movie was good, so I expected the book to be just as good (or better, because most of the books I've read have been better than the movies which they make after them just to get more money).

This book is about a boy called Bastian who reads a stolen book in the school attic. The book Bastian reads is about a boy called Atreyu who is trying to save Fantastica. He can only do this by finding a human who can give the childlike empress a new name, which will make the Nothing go away and which will make the childlike empress well again. Bastian ends up calling the empress “Moon Child”, which makes the childlike empress well again and makes Fantastica safe again, but he does not know what adventures Fantastica has waiting for him.

I think that you should be at least nine to read this book because if you are younger you won't understand it when it switches between the two worlds, and if you are older you won't appreciate the adventure and the magic.

In my mind the old turtle is a bit like humans. Most humans don't care a bit in the world about what happens to the world and if their ancestors have a happy life or a sad life but only care about themselves, just like the old turtle. The Big Bang is a bit like the Nothing, except the Big Bang started off with nothing and ended with something, but the Nothing started off with something and ended with nothing at all. I think that Atreyu is bit like ME because he does care if Fantastica survives or not. When I came to the part where the monkey said that he would have to stay in that topsy turvy town forever if he didn't find his way home again before he lost all of his memory, a shiver went down my spine because I was worried that he would have to stay in that topsy turvy town forever.

The characters were definitely not all realistic because some could do magic, and the characters definitely don't look normal. Contrary to those big differences between the characters and us there were some similarities. For example, Bastian turned a little evil from having the power of wishing, because power makes you sour. Similarly the setting, like the characters, was a bit realistic and a bit unrealistic. The human world where Bastian lived was realistic, but Fantastica was completely unrealistic (you can even guess that by its name).

Although I had discovered many morals in reading this book there is one in particular that stuck with me. The moral that I think is really important is that when Bastian had the power of wishing he turned a bit evil. However, I am not sure that the book was all about this real moral problem in the world. Still, while reading it I noticed that it talked a bit about Bastian turning evil from all of the power he had, Atreyu trying to save him by defeating him, and Xayide trying to defeat him by being defeated (the opposite, something which doesn't make sense at first but after you think about it starts to make sense).

also on Guardian Children's Book Site