Tag Archives: cornelia funke

Cornelia Funke and Anna Lanyon

I know it’s a bit sad, but for only the second time in my life I sent a fan email to an author – to Cornelia Funke. I got areply today, from her sister, who apparently has taken on the task of answering the fan mail Cornelia receives. (Although of course, she still reads all of it, and it’s very precious to her….) Anyway, she let me in on the tentative title of the third Ink book: Inkdeath. Oh dear.

I think I quite like being a fan. I think I’ve written before about the issues of being a fan, me being such a snob and all… but the look on Anna Lanyon’s face, after I heard her speaking about her books Malinche and The New World of Martin Cortes, and then I asked her for her autograph, was incredibly worthwhile. I think, if I were an author, I would get a kick out of anyone saying they liked my work. Surely you don’t get sick of that too quickly?

Inkspell

This is the sequel to Inkheart – I’m sure I’ve raved about Cornelia Funke. I intro’d someone at work to her, he read the first, and then bought the sequel still in hardback (mind you, kids’ books are sooo much cheaper!). He gave it to me, and … well, it is of course brilliant. She certainly doesn’t pull any punches, though. No holding back on tricky issues and not too soppy about some of the characters, either! The feelings of Dustfinger for Resa, and Fenoglio for one of his characters, are certainly not straight forward. I think this is good; it’s real, anyway, which I think is good in a fantasy for kids – helps to think through these things in a less threatening way, or sonething (eh; what do I know).

Inkspell

I have just started reading Inkspell, the sequel to Inkheart, by Cornelia Funke. I didn’t buy it; I told a fellow English teacher at school about her, and he read the first one weekend, and then the next week came to school and announced he had bought the sequel and was getting through it, too. (As an aside, I love kids’ books; they’re cheaper than adult books, even when they are the same length!) It is, of course, fantastic, and the style is as enchanting as ever. And I really must make a list of the books quoted at the start of the chapters and find them.

I am still entertained by the publishing house , too – called The Chicken House – and its web address, http://www.doublecluck.com. Tee hee.

Borders 3 for 2 – Eragon, Inkheart, Trojan Odyssey

Even though it is part of the Evil American Empire Taking Over the World, I really do like Borders; especially their 3 for 2 tables. I know all about impulse buying and luring people in to buy things they don’t really need, and I don’t really mind that it sometimes works on me.

Eragon, by Christopher Paolini
I didn’t realise, until I got to the author bit at the end, that this was written by a teenager… although I had guessed that it was a first novel, by some of the clunkier bits in it. But I really loved this book; it’s got some good ideas and some great characters, and it’s obvious that it can be developed, probably into a trilogy – I know the second one is out now. I like that there are a couple of secrets not revealed and questions not resolved, and that these haven’t been played up too heavily in the story; there hasn’t been a whole lot of griping about them, nor have there been many clues, so I at least am not positive about how they will be resolved. I am definitely going to read the rest. I like being back with dragons!

Inkheart by Cornelia Funke
This book captured my heart. It’s fantastic. Whoever translated it was brilliant; I can’t even imagine how hard translation work like that must be. I love that there were quotes from different books, real books, at the start of each chapter; it’s such a nice touch, particularly when I knew and loved some of them – The Neverending Story (which of course was written in German originally), and The Princess Bride, to mention only two. It’s also given me some new books to find! But back to Inkheart… lots of people have thought about meeting the characters from books, but this is a whole new twist on the idea, and it was very well realised. The characters are wonderful, the intricacies of the plot are brilliant. It’s a kid’s book – teenagers maybe – which is partly obvious from the hints you get throughout that the heroine, at least, has a future after the adventure; my gosh, though, I would recommend this to adults with no hesitation. I’m also going to buy the author’s first book, Thief Lord, which I saw in the shop the other day.

Trojan Odyssey, by Clive Cussler
After Valhalla Rising, I swore that I would read no more Cussler books… it was all just getting way, way too tacky for me, and so formulaic I felt I could guess what Dirk and Al would say to each other. But then I saw this on the 3 for 2 table, and my itchings to keep following their adventures got the better of me. Even though I knew the writing would be a bit painful, I was willing to put up with it for the sake of the adventures. And I was as right as I knew I would be: the writing was a bit boring, some bits were excruciatingly average, but the adventure was a whole lot of fun. Given the ending, I am pretty sure this will be the last Dirk Pitt adventure. I really, really hope that Cussler doesn’t think he can continue the franchise with Dirk Jnr; that would be just wrong. I’m thinking now of going back to the old books and seeing for myself whether it was me or the writing that got old. But I don’t think I will read the other Cussler series; I just don’t have the emotional attachment to the characters to be willing to put myself through it.