Publisher's Note:  

In this new adventure with Tess and Max, internationally bestselling author Amy Ephron takes readers to London at Christmastime, where a new fantastical journey awaits.

It's Christmas break and Tess and Max are in London, staying at the posh Sanborn House with their Aunt Evie. As they wait for their parents to arrive, there is an unusual snowstorm that makes the city seem as if it's caught in a snow globe. Perfect weather for an adventure in Hyde Park. But when Max, Tess, and Aunt Evie leave to search for a cab, they find a horse and carriage and driver curiously waiting for them at the curb. And that's just the beginning...

Soon Tess is charmed by a mysterious boy named Colin who lives at the hotel all year round--on the 8th floor. But Max is sure the elevator only had 7 floors the day before. And how come everyone at the hotel seems to ignore Colin? Things seem to get stranger and stranger. There's a 1920s costume party in Colin's parents' apartment. A marble that seems to be more than it appears. And a shadow that passes mysteriously by Tess and Max's hotel window.

Tess wants to figure out what's going on, but finds only more questions: Is it just a coincidence that Colin's last name is Sanborn, the same as the hotel? Why does the cat's-eye marble look eerily similar to the crystal at the top of their hotel room key? And, most importantly, what happened in that hotel one Christmas long, long ago?

In this mysterious story sprinkled with holiday enchantment, Amy Ephron transports readers into the magic of London at wintertime, where it's just possible that what seems imaginary is real, and your wishes might come true.

This book was sent to Compass Book Ratings for review by Philomel

The Other Side of the Wall

by Amy Ephron

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Overall Review:  

Amy Ephron has quite the imagination in The Other Side of the Wall as she transports us back and forth through the past and present. Main characters and siblings, Max and Tess, have such a sweet relationship which is nice to see as that is rare in today's media. Ephron's writing style is similar to Cressida Cowell in that both authors don't always follow the rules and mechanics of writing. For example, there are run-on and incomplete sentences, making the writing feel disconnected at times. If you're an English teacher, this might make you feel like you need to whip out your red pen. However, if you like rebels, rule-breakers, or just enjoy that type of writing, then this is definitely for you. Ephron is meticulous in her details, making it easy to see what she is describing. There are a few instances when her descriptions were contradictory (i.e. when describing the weather at the beginning) but overall, her depictions were excellent. If you're looking for a quick, adventurous read, check out The Other Side of the Wall. 

Review of an Advanced Reader's Copy

Content Analysis:  

Profanity/Language:  None

Violence/Gore:  Few (2) brief incidents including a character wants to slap another; characters' lives are threatened when they get in an iced-over pond.

Sex/Nudity:  None

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Reviewed By Jenny
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