100 Cupboards

100 Cupboards

by N. D. Wilson
Publisher: Random House
Hardcover, 289 pages
Current Retail Price: $16.99
Not in stock

Twelve-year-old Henry York has lived a sheltered life. He's never tasted soda or played baseball. He's never really traveled, or been to other places, or had adventures. But now he's on his way to Kansas to stay with his aunt and uncle and three girl cousins. One night he hears thumping and scratching on the other side of his attic bedroom wall. Peeling back the plaster, he finds a set of cupboards. When Henry finally opens one he smells rain, and hears trees rustling—on a summer day in Kansas. Opening another one discloses a room, and a man walking back and forth.

Clearly, he's not in Kansas anymore.

His only clue to the nature of the cupboards is a diary left to him by his grandfather—the collector and explorer of the cupboards. As Henry learns to play baseball, attends barbecues, collects tumbleweed, and befriends his cousins, he also begins to explore the mysterious worlds of the cupboards. But all is not as it seems, as Henry discovers when he opens the wrong cupboard door....

As a story about a boy who finds a magic cupboard,100 Cupboards can't help but be reminiscent of other fantasy classics, and it's full of allusions, from Oz to Arthurian legend. Yet it stands on its own as a clever twist on the classic premise. N.D. Wilson takes aim at our increasingly overprotective society, and encourages taking risks, getting dirty, having fun, and going on adventures.

Mysterious and intriguing enough to capture the attention of even the most reluctant reader, and yet grounded by the presence of a loving family with solid morals, this first book in the 100 Cupboards trilogy is fascinating, sometimes frightening, and ultimately satisfying.

 

Review by Lauren Shearer
Lauren Shearer writes words for fun and profit. She also makes films, but everyone knows you can't make a profit doing that. Her other hobby is consistently volunteering way too much of her time. You can read more of her reviews here.

 

 

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Summary: A sheltered boy finds one hundred magical cupboards behind a peeling wall in a Kansas farm house.

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  A Fun Creepy Story
Crystal, 8/25/2016
This book is mysterious, but I will warn you that it can also be a little scary. I myself found parts of the story to be quite creepy, but if you continue reading you will find it becomes not quite so scary. If you are easily frightened by things such as someone passing out because they are scared or of creepy things coming out of bedroom cupboards, then I recommend you skip this story or maybe read it with a parent. Overall I ended up really enjoying this fascinating story and the way ordinary things became magical.
  100 Cupboards
Nathan of Michigan, 7/21/2016
I gave this book 5/5 for various reasons. For one, the story is well written and the plot line is easy to follow. Second, there is lots of action, and some very interesting characters. Finally, the book is set at a quick pace, making it almost impossible to put down. In all I enjoyed this book and would recommend this to almost anybody.
  The First Book in An Awesome Trilogy!
HappyHomemaker of Oregon, 4/15/2011
A fun, easy read that is just delightful! A modern-day fantasy tale set squarely in Kansas, Henry is not an extraordinary boy by any means. In fact you might call him even less than mediocre. But the fun just starts there. N.D. Wilson has a wonderful way with words that just brings OUR world to life. That's one of my favorite parts; he makes our everyday world worth paying attention to. He makes a family dinner something to long for. He makes the family unit real and important.
This is the first of three books, so although it ends well, the story isn't over!
A note of caution: the bad guy is evil. Very evil, and somewhat disgusting. Depending on how sensitive your young children are, this book might need to wait.
  A Clever Use of Words Makes A Fun Story Delightful
Amanda Evans of Oregon City, 10/17/2008
Henry York is a boy somewhat like a modern day, American Eustace Scrubb. His parents gave him instruction manuals and technical books for gifts and sent him to PE class with a helmet. Before the summer he went to stay with his uncle and aunt, he had never played baseball. "The boy's white grass," Uncle Frank said, "Like when you leave a board in the yard. You pick it up after a coupla weeks or days even, and the grass underneath is all white and yellow. No sunshine. Only, Henry's been under a board in the yard for longer than a coupla days..."

That summer, Henry gets his first taste, not only of baseball, but also of adventure when he finds 99 puzzling, enigmatic cupboards in the wall of his attic bedroom. As the cupboards open and Henry glimpses through to other worlds, questions arise about his past and mysteries about the old house, the dead grandfather, and his uncle Frank come to light. Along with his cousin, Henrietta, and the wizened old cat, Blake, Henry curiously dives head-first into his first adventure.

This book ends happily, but Henry's tale is only just beginning! With a light-hearted, easy-to-read style, N. D. Wilson embarks on his three-part tale of a normal boy encountering extraordinary circumstances. But he doesn't just relate what happens. His clever descriptions, unique expressions, and natural dialogue will keep readers of any age eagerly turning pages. This story will be especially delightful to children who, like Henry, have been under a board in the yard for too long and need to bring the sunshine of adventure into their lives.