By Max Porter
This book made me hold my breath so it’s a good thing it’s short! Lanny is a young, idiosyncratic boy who has recently moved to an English village with his parents, Jolie and Robert. He’s a free range, nature-loving, artistic soul who befriends a famous local artist, Pete. Lanny is on the cusp of childhood, tuned in to the natural surrounds and the ethereal wanderings of Dead Papa Toothwort, as only a child under ten can be. Lanny is my favourite child in literature since Scout Finch – fully realised. The village they live in, a commuter town to London, is a character unto itself. It really springs to live after Lanny goes missing. It’s not the picturesque, sweet country village that we often see in literature. Instead we see the old-timers pitted against the more recent townsfolk like Lanny’s family….the differences are stark and in some ways showcase Brexit attitudes. The book is best described as a collage, it’s like nothing I’ve read before. It forces you to pay attention whilst reading. Poetic, magical and 100% marvellous! I loved it so much I then went on to listen to the audiobook version read by the author.