Books That Need Theme Parks
Kate Milford, best known for her book Greenglass House, has a new book out: The Thief Knot. I was so incredibly excited to receive a copy from Clarion and I’m thrilled to report that it’s a delight. I couldn’t help but start it as soon as it was in my hands and, once I started reading, I did not want to put it down. I hadn’t had an experience like that with a book in a while, so it was so fun to feel that urge to jump back into the story whenever I had the chance.
Milford is one of my favorite writers for middle grade. She doesn’t dumb down her writing one bit (in fact, I always end up looking up words while I’m reading her) and her writing is that amazing combination of feeling effortless, but also making you pause sometimes to admire and realize just how skilled she is. Beyond that, she just flat out writes great plot and characters. I was so curious to figure out what would happen in this book and I cared about each of the characters in this new group of friends, plus the eccentric bunch of adults around them. Marzana, our heroine, is a character I think many of us bookish types can relate to, and I really appreciated the way Milford sensitively portrayed her.
Also, Nagspeake? One of the coolest worlds out there and it just got all the better in this book. From the hidden museum of glass with tea and scones mysteriously waiting out for you to how the Old Iron has a mind of its own to their school with its Orangery and English knot garden and three libraries (complete with ladder and galleries and nooks), I love all the amazingly creative details.
I highly recommend this one.
A few years ago I had the pleasure of listening to Kate Milford talk about her book Left-Handed Fate and to chat with her a little bit afterwards while she signed our copy. When I’m nervous, I blurt things, and before I knew it I was telling her how awesome Nagspeake would be for a theme park.
This got me thinking…what other book worlds should be theme parks?
Obviously, we’ve got Harry Potter taken care of. Have you been? I cried when I walked in to Hogsmeade. It was, just for a moment, me and my husband and the music we know so well and I couldn’t believe that I was going to get to actually walk around something that has been such a central part of my life. We also went to Leavesden Studios when we were in England and it was, in short, pure magic.
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Theme Park Pitches
- I’ll need to stay at the Hotel Deucalion and wander around because it sounds fascinating, plus I can’t even explain to you how badly I want to see what my room would turn into. It’s like the ultimate online personality quiz. As for the park itself? Let’s try out the Brolly Rail and see if we can navigate with a crew through the Tricksy Lanes and Swindleroads. I’ll be spending a lot of time at the Nevermoor Bazaar and you can absolutely get me to pay extra for the after hours event of The Battle of Christmas Eve. I might pass on the Hallowmas Black Parade, Museum of Stolen Moments, and some of the Trolloseum events (I’m a scaredy-cat), but I won’t be missing the Show Trials performances and a chance to get go into the previously hidden Jemmity Park.
- How amazing would it be to get to walk through a wardrobe into that snowy scene with the glowing lamp? Tumnus, as portrayed by James McAvoy, can be there greeting us, too. I’m going to skip the Turkish Delights stalls, but I will be riding the Dawn Treader and thoroughly enjoying the slow ride through the forest, except for the part where they’re bound to have the White Witch scare us. Will you cover my eyes?
- The Night Circus
- The imagination that dreamed up the contents of these tents blows me away and wouldn’t you be so excited to see anything coming even close to it? I’ll definitely be visiting The Wishing Tree and The Ice Garden and lingering for a long time in the room with the jars scented to invoke memories of idyllic moments. How crazy amazing would that be? Oh, with the hot chocolate topped with cream in my hands. The ride I’ll be spending the most time on? The Cloud Maze. I mean…
- Keeper of the Lost Cities Worlds
- We’ll walk in to the glittering crystal palaces of Eternalia before riding alicorns and seeing if we can make it down the King’s Path. I think I’ll give Splotchball a shot and should we save time for shopping at Slurps and Burps? Honestly, though, the first thing I know I’m going to do is try some butterblasts (golden pastries topped with sugar crystals that taste like fresh, hot pancakes with a maple center), mallowmalts (a gooey cake that melts in your mouth and tastes like chocolate chip cookies, ice cream, and butterscotch), and pudding puffs (fudge squares that taste like warm apple pie and melted vanilla ice cream).
- Is it too tame for a theme park? I mean, we could have raft rides gone awry and a spoooooky ride through the Haunted Wood. There will be plenty of places to stop for raspberry cordial and puffy apple dumplings and everything else in this cookbook I’ve linked to above. Plus, I kind of just want to walk around Anne’s world. She’s like the original hype woman and has me fully sold.
- Greenglass House
- We’ll ride up the incline railway and there will be a mug of the best ever hot chocolate waiting. No one will mind while we wander around staring at the stained glass and stunning views and then there’s always that fireplace to snuggle up around.
- I think Ben Guterson looked into my head about what heaven should be. From the mountain views to the candy making to the unbelievable library, this place is filled with perfection. Demon witch lady not welcome.
- Hobbit holes
- Sooo I haven’t read any Tolkien, BUT, those hobbit holes look delightful in the movies and elevenses sounds delightful. I’m picturing this like those tiny cabin set-ups and think it will be a big hit.
- Rosamund Pilcher’s cottages
- No one does cozy like Ms. Pilcher. We can travel to Great Britain and stay in one of these beauties and have all our dreams come true.
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