Book 3 of the Landon Snow series is a water / island adventure. Landon, a twelve year old boy, has had two journeys into the fantastic world of Wonderwood, using a passage he discovered at the library in his grandpa's hometown. When he and his two sisters go to visit grandpa again, Landon is looking forward to yet another adventure. However, things are different this time. Landon and the girls go to the library at daytime, not at night as they did before; the books do not come alive, and there is no passage to Wonderwood. Things seem as normal as normal can be… until the small drip from a leaking pipe turns into a stream, and the stream turns into a flood. The children climb into a stone boat, a part of the tombstone of Bartholomew G. Benneford the library is named after. The boat suddenly turns into a real rowboat, and then into a ship; before they know it, Landon, Holly and Bridget are in the midst of an ocean, sailing along.
Click here to see the rest of this review
Landon has no idea of what's going on and what to do; he only knows it is not Wonderwood where he'd been before. The children explore the ship and discover that they are alone on it. No other ships are seen in the ocean, either. They also find out that the ship is controlled by a large book on the helm that serves as a steering wheel: in order to turn the vessel left or right you must turn the pages. Having secured the book pages with a rope so that the ship keeps going straight ahead, Landon and his sisters continue exploring. They find food supplies, clothes, swords, and canons. Still, there is no answer to the question of what is happening and what they are supposed to do. The answer comes on the next day when a bigger ship overtakes them. Landon is happy to recognize his friends from Wonderwood: the short dwarflike Hardy and the talking horse Melech. Hardy and Melech come aboard and tell Landon that they are heading to the Island of Arcanum where all the animals of Wonderwood had been taken and are kept captive by the evil Malus Quidam. It is time to rescue the animals and bring them home. And they need Landon's help.
Landon agrees to help. They sail to the island and come ashore. The girls stay on the ship, and Landon, Melech, Hardy, and two of Hardy's friends go into a tunnel that leads to the place where animals are kept. In the tunnel, they encounter two more people from Wonderwood, a couple named Griggs and Dot. These two had willingly gone to the island with the animals, hoping to bring them back someday, but it turned out to be impossible. The Chief Arcanum has put a spell on the animals, making them listen to only his voice, so they wouldn't leave the island even if they could. The chief repeats his spell every day, and everyone who hears it falls under its power. Griggs and Dot have been stuffing their ears with moss, so they are still free, but they don't know how to release the animals.
Landon and his friends refuse to give up and continue on their way. They reach the animal keep with hundreds of skinny, starved animals. The arcans notice their intrusion, and the chief starts shouting the spell. But it turns out that the spell has no power over Landon, and he manages to break it by repeating the words and making the animals follow him. They all flee back to the ship, chased by the arcans. A battle takes place on the beach. Landon kills the Chief Arcan, the animals board the big ship and it sails away. The mission is accomplished. Landon and his sisters take off in their own ship. As they enter the food chamber, something happens, and they find themselves in their grandma's pantry.
The review of this Book prepared by Laura Southcombe