- Character Development
It is often difficult to find a fantasy read that has everything from a brilliant concept to an intriguing world and thus I am pleasantly surprised when Angelica Banks’ middle grade fiction Finding Serendipity has basically everything that one would ever want in a fantasy book.
Finding Serendipity is about a young girl Tuesday who begins a quest to find her mother Serendipity, who is a writer. Readers are able to follow Tuesday as she discovers the fantastical world of writers and have an awesome and wonderful behind-the-scene tour that portrays writing as magical, quite literally. It is a delightful fantasy novel with a satisfying plot that certainly draws the attention of anyone, no matter young kids or grown-ups.
The setting of Finding Serendipity is absolutely fantastic as it is not only very well developed, but also very wonderful. The ideas that Angelica Banks has for this book are all wonderfully executed and it is thus an absolute joy to get on the ride with Tuesday. Every aspect of the setting and the concept of the world has been translated beautifully and it is very easy to understand how the magical world works. The setting of this book is quite frankly one of the best fictional worlds that I have ever read about and it definitely makes readers want to travel to this world.
The plot is not very complicated but it is surely satisfying enough. With the brilliantly developed setting, it might seem like the plot is underdeveloped but when readers pull these two apart, the plot itself quite excellent itself. It may not be on par with the plots that the older Young Adult readers usually read about but the younger YA readers would certainly appreciate it. And being just a Middle Grade fiction, the plot of Finding Serendipity is definitely already very awesome.
However, one slight problem is the mismatch between the writing style and the tone that the older characters adapt towards the younger characters. The writing style is very exquisite and the choice of words clearly reflects that. It is apparent that Angelica Banks has put a huge amount of effort in the writing and it definitely pays off. However the tone that the adults use, especially Tuesday’s parents and the librarian in the world of authors, is slightly weird when the narration is using such high-class language. They speak to Tuesday as if speaking to someone much younger than she actually is and as if they are telling bedtime stories to her, which makes it a little off-balance.
A book is successful (in my opinion) when it draws readers in so completely that it makes readers want to experience what the characters have experienced. Finding Serendipity makes me want to just pick up my typewriter (or computer) and start my own writing journey so as to experience the fantastic magical world of writing that Angelica Banks has created in this book. To me, this is the definition of a successful and powerful book.