Last weekend I finished The Devil I Know by Claire Kilroy (which I loved) and I just couldn’t decide what I was in the mood for next. Eager to stick to my Reading Ireland plans (a month long event supporting Irish literature, culture etc hosted by 746 Books and The Fluff is Raging) I remembered I had one of John Connolly’s novellas on my kindle, The Wanderer in Unknown Realms. It was short so I figured, sure it’ll keep me going till I decide what I want to tackle next.
When Lionel Maulding disappears, Soter a WW1 veteran and haunted by his experiences, is employed to try find him. What he discovers among Mauling’s vast (and I mean VAST) book collection is truly terrifying.
I’m really not sure how I feel about this book. As a general rule I love John Connolly. Both The Book of Lost Things and The Museum of Literary souls were delightful, incorporating some slightly creepy elements and what lets face it is the dream of most book lovers, books coming to life. This book follows a similar premise, examining the role and impact books have on our world arguing:
“Books alter men, and men, in their turn, alter worlds.”
Its certainly an interesting premise.
However I never felt I really got into this book. I never felt fully engaged. I suspect this has more to do with my own frame of mind while I was reading it, then the book. The book itself is up to Connolly’s usual standard. If you have enjoyed Connolly’s other work, disregard my rating, as I would still recommend it.