For me, The Book of Lost Things is one of those books that embody why I read in the first place. I completely lost myself in this story, the characters, and David's journey.
David is a 12 year old boy living in England during the onset of the Second World War. The Nazis are on bombing raids of London and his life is in turmoil not only from the War but from the recent loss of his mother and his father's remarriage and the arrival of a new child into the household. He is a child that is ripe for the type of voyage on which he is about to embark.
David is, like most of us I think, called by books. However, those of us that are schizophrenic notwithstanding, he can actually HEAR their whispers. And sometimes they demand his attention. He realizes that what is happening is not normal, and more than a little scary. Especially when he begins to be visited by "the crooked man," a character that David knows can't exist, but who clearly has a plan that involves him.
I don't want to give away any of the plot, but I will say that The Book of Lost Things takes us on a ride through the darkest of fairy tales, some re-imagined, some simply fleshed out in their original gory and horrifying detail, toward that most cherished of destinations---home. Along the way David learns about the nature and inevitability of loss, about loyalty and belonging, and how life is really about things lost and, sometimes, if we live it right, it is about finding our way again.
You will choke up at points, experience chills at how dark some of these fair tales really are, laugh out loud, thrill to the adventure, and in the end experience a beautiful and bitter-sweet tale. But isn't that how a fairy tale, and life itself, really turns out?