The Mysterious Edge of the Heroic World

The Mysterious Edge of the Heroic World

Book - 2009
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Amedeo Kaplan has moved into the town of St. Malo, Florida, a navy town where new faces are the norm. When Amedeo and William find themselves working together on a house sale for Amedeo's eccentric neighbor, Mrs. Zender, the boys find themselves caught up in a story that links a sketch, a young boy's life, an old man's reminiscence, and a painful secret dating back to the outrages of Nazi Germany.
Publisher: New York : Aladdin Paperbacks, 2009, c2007.
ISBN: 9781416953531
1416953531
9781416949725
1416949720
Characteristics: 244 p. ;,20 cm.

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GailRoger
Apr 01, 2010

Like E.L. Konigsberg's classic From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs Basil E. Frankweiler, there's an art mystery at the heart of this story of two pre-teen boys and their growing friendship with a wealthy and eccentric old lady. However, with Mixed-Up Files, I was enchanted and drawn in by the very opening words. Mysterious Edge takes some faith and some reading to get into the plot. Once in, though, it's a satisfying story, though not nearly as light-hearted as Mixed-up Files was. There's a heart-breaking and sinister Holocaust connection. Also some great verses from one of my favourite poets, Phyllis McGinley.

I had an interesting context for this book. I was reading this, the latest of E.L. Konigsberg's novels, at the same time that I was reading the earliest of Madeleine L'Engle's books The Joys of Love. Both L'engle and Konigsberg were among my very favourite authors when growing up; I have read pretty well everything they have written, and own most of their works. The L'engle book was an example of a young author not quite hitting her stride; The Mysterious Edge of the Heroic World is something like Konigberg's twenty-first published work. It's one of her better ones.

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