I’ve been intrigued by the book 100 Cupboards since it came out, but never had a chance to read it. So, when I saw the audiobook (and I just happened to be in need of an audiobook right then), I snatched it up.
Twelve-year-old Henry’s parents have been kidnapped in a foreign country and are being held for ransom. While the State Department negotiates for their release, Henry is sent to live with his aunt and uncle in Henry, Kansas (yes, the same name). When the plaster starts falling off of his attic room wall onto his bed, Henry investigates and begins chipping away to reveal cupboard doors embedded into the wall. Henry’s cousin Henrietta discovers what he’s doing and she enthusiastically joins in. Together they discover that the cupboards are openings to other worlds, some pleasant and some scary. But when things from the other side of the cupboards start coming into their world, things become terrifying. Will Henry and Henrietta become trapped in the cupboards forever? And will they be able to send back what’s come through?
I had a bit of a hard time getting into the book—I think because I was distracted thinking about things at work and I kept losing the thread of the story. After that passed, though, I looked forward with great anticipation to picking up the story again when I got into the car. The story itself has an intriguing premise, with literally worlds of possibility to keep the story going. Russell Horton does a fantastic job of voicing all of the characters, and makes the story come alive.
Put this book into the hands of kids who enjoy fantasy.
UPDATE: I just finished the audiobook of Dandelion Fire, the sequel to 100 Cupboards. If anything, I liked it better. Several of the threads of the first story came together to answer questions and bring the story to a very satisfying conclusion. If you read and enjoy the first, don’t hesitate to pick up the second!