The novel tells the story of a boy named Toby, who is born completely paralyzed. He’s raised in a Carmelite convent and lives his days imagining adventures on the moon with his cat Shipley. One night, Shipley turns into a person (of the Fel race) and informs Toby he’s heir to the Fel throne. Suddenly Toby can walk and speak, and that’s only the very start of his adventures.
Let me just say: what a book! From the very beginning, the story captures the imagination and sympathies of the reader. Toby is a great character, and I wanted him to succeed every moment of the book. I thought Egil and Toby made a great team, and I think I might put them in the big box of “best characters ever.” Emma, Toby’s half-sister, was okay. At first I really disliked her, but as the story continued and her flaws and strengths were revealed, I found myself liking her more. She had nothing on Toby though.
The ending was very predictable, even the disappointing epilogue. I guessed it from about page 5. Speaking of the ending, I’m not quite sure how I feel about it. It isn’t the happiest of endings, but it’s a real ending. I’m torn between liking the reality of how the story concludes and disliking the harsh truth. I think reality might win. In the sea of disappointment, however, there is a glimmer of happiness and hope.
In the end, though I found the story to be more predictable than my lunch choices, I adored Toby, the Fel world, Egil and Sister Mary enough to give this novel 4.5/5. Go read it!