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far far away
Transcript of far far away
By Tom McNeal
Tom McNeal lives near San Diego with his wife,
Laura McNeal, and their two sons. He writes
some of his books with his wife, Laura McNeal.
Other books by this author are
Crooked, Zipped, Crushed, The Decoding of Lana Morris, To Be Sung Underwater
Jeremy Johnson Johnson has a supposedly dead mother, and his father rarely leaves his
Jacob Grimm's ancient ghost has traveled the world looking to move on from Earth and see his family again. In his life, he was one of the famous Brothers Grimm with his brother Wilhelm, and he was a fairytale collector.
The ghost narrates the story. He finds Jeremy and is Jeremy's only companion. He thinks that he may be able to move on to the other life by doing a good deed and helping Jeremy.
Jeremy meets Ginger Boultinghouse, a girl with crazy hair and a spitfire personality. She is kind to him and many other people.
Jeremy agrees to help Ginger and her friends play a childish prank on the town baker, who is extremely kind and generous to everyone.
Only Jeremy gets caught for breaking and entering, but the baker lets him off the hook and refuses to press charges. Instead, the whole town shuns him. Even though he is in debt and will soon lose his home and bookstore, his lawn clients refuse to hire him anymore.
By a stroke of luck, Jeremy makes it on the television show, "Uncommon Knowledge," as an expert on the Brothers Grimm and their tales. Really, Jacob wants to give him the answers in his head so he can win the money and pay off his debt. He feels bad about cheating, so he purposely gets the last answer wrong and loses all of the money. He is still in serious debt.
The kind baker still offers Jeremy and Ginger work, so Jeremy can build up some money despite the town's shunning. One day, he takes them out to the woods to chop lumber for him, but he drugs their lunch to knock them out and kidnaps them.
They suffer with little food, little light, and awful conditions in a prison-like dungeon below the bakers' house. There is another young employee of the baker's named Frank Bailey who is trapped with them.
The ghost, Jacob, musters all of his power. He speaks to one of the villagers to get help for the kids.
Jeremy stared back fiercely as a weak and failing creature could stare. "My ghost," he said in a stiff whisper, "will never forget and never give up." Ginger covered her eyes with her open hands and began moving her lips. Frank Bailey, in a small, earnest voice, said, "You could just let us go, Mr. Blix. You could just let us go." (McNeal 333)
Jacob gets the village to find them, and everyone gets better and is able to follow their dreams. It is happily ever after, just like in many of the tales of the Brothers Grimm.
Ginger Boultinghouse is a fiery character. She is a risk-taker, a thrill-seeker, and an extremely loyal friend.
If this were made into a movie, I think she would be played by Elle Fanning. She is tall, has a bright smile, has a friendly acting personality, and is around the age of Ginger in the book.
The kind lady who Jacob sings to to get help for the children is named Jenny Applegarth. She is helping Jeremy's father integrate back into society, and she is a kind, middle-aged woman who is not afraid to help out Jeremy when he is shunned. She has a slight relationship with Jeremy's father.
I think a much older version of Emma Stone could play Jenny in a movie version of the novel because of her aura, and she portrayed an unwillingness to discriminate against others in her recent movie, "The Help."
Far Far Away takes place in a modern time period in the United States. There are common clothing items recognized in the book, and one of the main characters, Jeremy, goes on a game show.
I would give this book five out of five stars. It has portions of action, suspense, mystery, and other elements that make up a good novel. It is mostly in the fantasy genre, but a wide variety of people could enjoy it! It targets mostly young readers because of the youthful main characters.
Overall, this was a good book to read. It
shows that any circumstance can result in some version of happily ever after.