Monday, August 22, 2016

Review: Furthermore - Tahereh Mafi

Tahereh Mafi
Series: N/A
Genre: Fantasy, Middle Grade
Publisher: Dutton Books for Young Readers
Release Date: August 30, 2016
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Thanks to Dutton Books for the ARC I received at BEA!

The best word to describe Furthermore is whimsical. From the start, the reader is thrown into a fantasy world called Ferenwood. In Ferenwood, color is everything - the more colorful, the more magical. However, poor Alice has no color at all, making her feel inadequate and out of place. On top of that, her mother seems to hate her and her father went missing three years ago. On her twelfth birthday, Oliver, a boy she once went to school with, says something that changes everything: he knows where her father is.

Furthermore follows this beloved duo as they journey into the land of Furthermore, which is far stranger than Ferenwood. In Furthermore, there are no rules - anything is possible - and that makes it so much more dangerous. Furthermore is absolutely not the kind of place you would want to vacation.

I couldn't help but be reminded of The Phantom Tollbooth (one of my favorite books) and Alice in Wonderland while reading Furthermore. There's something about the logic (or lack-there-of) in these three books - the fact that you never know what sort of backwards logic is actually normal in the world - that I absolutely love. I also thoroughly enjoyed the way the story was told. I kind of just imagined sitting on the floor, looking up at Tahereh Mafi reading this book to me with fun voices. It really does read so much like a fairytale, but it's more like a Grimms brothers fairytale than a Disney one.

More thoughts this way!

When it comes to the characters, I really loved the way Mafi built them. They were very far from perfect, and they had to learn how to get past things before they could truly work well together. There are so many themes explored in this book, from friendship and trust, to darker themes like prejudice and abandonment. There's even a bit with Alice's mother having an addiction to berries that make her less sad when father is away.

The plot of this book was so topsy turvy! The ending was a bit abrupt, but I kind of liked it because it was so Furthermore. Sometimes there's a big struggle to get where you're going, but other times you might just end up in the right place at the right time.


Overall, Furthermore was such a fun, whimsical adventure. Even though this is middle grade (which is not a typical genre for me), it's such a fun fantasy that I think anyone can enjoy if they're in the mood for something lighter. Here's to hoping there will be a sequel!

- Kiersten

What's your favorite fantasy world?
Let us know in the comments!


  1. I've been debating whether to read this or not. I read the first two books in her Shatter Me series but don't think I'll be finishing the trilogy. But I adored her writing. I don't know. I feel like her writing would work better for a whimsical kind of story, and the Alice in Wonderland-esque feeling is drawing me in. I think after seeing your review, I'm more inclined to try it. Lovely review Kiersten! :D

  2. I'm thinking about reading this one, looks pretty cool. The world that she created seems to be great!

    Thiago - DoctorCorgi