Happy Monday, guys!
Here's my MMGM review of The Many Worlds of Albie Bright!
I'll admit: I was a little dubious at first - can you really tell a story of parallel worlds in such a brief book? - but Albie won my heart over with his journey to find his mother.
MMGM is a feature hosted by the fabulous Shannon Messenger on her blog every week!
Published May 30th 2017 by Delacorte Press (first published January 14th 2016)
Format read: Finished copy via publisher
But then Albie’s mother dies of cancer, and his world is shattered. When his father explains that she might be alive in a parallel universe, Albie knows he has to find her. So, armed with a box, a laptop, and a banana, Albie sets out to do just that.
Of course, when you’re universe-hopping for the very first time, it’s difficult to find the one you want. As Albie searches, he discovers some pretty big surprises about himself and our universe(s), and stumbles upon the answers to life’s most challenging questions.
A poignant, funny, and heartwarming adventure, this extraordinary novel is for anyone who has ever been curious.
I looked at the synopsis, looked at the length of the book, and mused: "Can you really tell a tale about parallel universes in such a brief text?" Well, the answer is: Yes, and it's a beautiful story, at that.
Christopher Edge introduces readers to ten-year-old Stephen Albie Bright, the son of two high-profile scientists. But when his mom dies, Stephen goes on a journey to find his mother in a parallel universe. What follows, is an important journey about learning how circumstances can shape a person, what it means to look beyond surface appearances, and how it's important to keep moving forward.
Because Albie goes on his journey, expecting to simply find his mother and fix all of the grief that he's felt since her death. But Edge does a brilliant job of showing that it's not that simple; in each parallel universe that Albie arrives at. There are little alterations and changes to that particular universe's Albie, with corresponding problems. Each Albie has to go through their own individual trials, and our Albie, quickly realizes that though his grief is painful, he is also not alone. It's a powerful lessons told eloquently using science and quantum physics, and readers of all ages, will admire just how effectively and elegantly, Edge is able to share these concepts.
But outside of Albie's own journey, Edge is careful to use others to emphasize the powerful that comes with moving on. There's an understandable emphasis on just how challenging that process is, but it's a necessity to continue living and bringing creativity into the world. This is especially effectively in one of the universes, where the fate of the world is an uncertain one, but that act of moving on helps open the door to something that may change that very fate.
All in all, Edge has written a powerful story in a few brief chapters. Science intermixed with Albie's coming-of-age journey is impactful, and I'm a little blown away by his journey. I can't wait to share this book with everyone. Highly recommend, full stop.
About the author:
CHRISTOPHER EDGE grew up in Manchester, England, where he spent most of his childhood in the local library dreaming up stories. He now lives in Gloucestershire, where he spends most of his time in the local library dreaming up stories. Before becoming a writer, he worked as an English teacher, an editor, and a publisher—any job that let him keep a book close at hand. He has written about encouraging children to read. When not writing, he also works as a freelance publisher and an education consultant. Visit him at christopheredge.co.uk.