FAR FAR AWAY

Tom McNeal

A dark, contemporary fairy tale in the tradition of Neil Gaiman.

Jeremy Johnson Johnson hears voices. Or, specifically, one voice: the ghost of Jacob Grimm, one half of The Brothers Grimm. Jacob watches over Jeremy, protecting him from an unknown dark evil whispered about in the space between this world and the next.

But Jacob can’t protect Jeremy from everything. When coltish, copper-haired Ginger Boultinghouse takes a bite of a cake so delicious it’s rumored to be bewitched, she falls in love with the first person she sees: Jeremy. In any other place, this would be a turn for the better for Jeremy,

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A dark, contemporary fairy tale in the tradition of Neil Gaiman.

Jeremy Johnson Johnson hears voices. Or, specifically, one voice: the ghost of Jacob Grimm, one half of The Brothers Grimm. Jacob watches over Jeremy, protecting him from an unknown dark evil whispered about in the space between this world and the next.

But Jacob can’t protect Jeremy from everything. When coltish, copper-haired Ginger Boultinghouse takes a bite of a cake so delicious it’s rumored to be bewitched, she falls in love with the first person she sees: Jeremy. In any other place, this would be a turn for the better for Jeremy, but not in Never Better, where the Finder of Occasions—whose identity and evil intentions nobody knows—is watching and waiting, waiting and watching. . . And as anyone familiar with the Brothers Grimm know, not all fairy tales have happy endings.

Veteran writer Tom McNeal has crafted a young adult novel at once grim(m) and hopeful, full of twists, and perfect for fans of contemporary fairy tales like Neil Gaiman’s The Graveyard Book and Holly Black’s Doll Bones.

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  • Knopf Books for Young Readers
  • Hardcover
  • June 2013
  • 384 Pages
  • 9780375849725

Buy the Book

$17.99

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About Tom McNeal

Tom McNeal is the critically acclaimed author of many short stories and the adult novel, Goodnight, Nebraska, winner of the 1999 James A. Michener Memorial Prize. He is married to the writer Laura McNeal and they live in Fallbrook, California.

Praise

“McNeal weaves in fantastical fairy-tale details into this inventive and deeply poignant narrative, creating a world that hovers between realism and enchantment.Publishers Weekly

McNeal superbly and elegantly enfolds those stories’ essence and depth into plot, setting, and characters; archetypal figures and situations glimmer through McNeal’s small-town American cast like tantalizing clues in a novel that becomes ever darker even as it sparkles with the dignified, affectionate voice of its ghostly narrator.”The Horn Book

Enchanting, romantic, and tinged with terror, this modern story subtly weaves the haunting essentials of the fairy-tale tradition into a fascinating and beautifully written homage to its source material.”The Bulletin

“Whether readers connect more deeply with the suspense, the magical elements, or the gloriously improbable love story, they will come away with a lingering taste of enchantment.School Library Journal