Author: Mechthild Gläser
Published: January 3 2017
Source: ARC via publishers
Amy Lennox doesn't know quite what to expect when she and her mother pick up and leave Germany for Scotland, heading to her mother's childhood home of Lennox House on the island of Stormsay.
Amy's grandmother, Lady Mairead, insists that Amy must read while she resides at Lennox House—but not in the usual way. It turns out that Amy is a book jumper, able to leap into a story and interact with the world inside. As thrilling as Amy's new power is, it also brings danger—someone is stealing from the books she visits, and that person may be after her life. Teaming up with fellow book jumper Will, Amy vows to get to the bottom of the thefts—at whatever the cost.
The Book Jumper has a gorgeous cover, a great synopsis, and an interesting premise -- but even with all of that, it's not enough to raise this young adult novel to more than a two out of five star rating. The basic elements of the story -- both character-wise and narrative-wise -- are familiar and have been done before so many times in the young adult age group. The Book Jumper feels more like a retread of other stories rather than a new novel possessing its own plot or arc.
Despite the less than original attempts at characterization and plotting, I did enjoy the gothic atmosphere that The Book Jumper carried. Amy's fights and struggles, both in print and not, make good use of the moody atmosphere that envelops her story. Towards the end of the narrative Gläser finds a rhythm for Amy and Will's race to uncover the mystery and the plotline grows more unique and far less easily predicted. It's a little too late to salvage the tropes and stereotypes that take up the bulk of the writing, but the ending is a strong and solid one.
Not as good as it could have been, but also not as bad as it would seem, The Book Jumper is a flawed, forgettable but mostly fun-in-the-moment read.