The Borrowers Afloat (The Borrowers #3)
Mary Norton (J Fantasy)
It all began when Mrs. May told Kate the story of the Borrowers: Pod, Homily, and Arrietty Clock. The story of how these little people lived happily under the kitchen floorboards at Firbank until being smoked out; how they survived hunger, weather, and a sinister gypsy with the help of a human being and a loner Borrower; and how all of this ended with an unexpected reunion with Uncle Hendreary and Aunt Lupy. But, as we’ve learned, things with the Borrowers are never easy and with bad news from the human boy Tom, our three friends are off on yet another adventure, except this time they’re aided by a most resourceful and trustworthy ally, Spiller.
The Borrowers Afloat is the third installment in The Borrowers series and it’s just as thrilling and enchanting as its predecessors. Norton continues to use each book to give readers a greater insight into the world of these resourceful and brave beings. In this book, we see how Uncle Hendreary and Aunt Lupy live and understand the partnership they’ve formed with Spiller. Also, Spiller has been promoted from a supporting role to a main character as he plays an instrumental part in saving the Clocks (quite a few times by now), as well as assisting them in securing permanent housing.
Of all the characters so far, Spiller is perhaps the most underrated and gracious as he gives up his home, time, and resources to assist the Clocks on more than one occasion. Although he works through barter, the kindnesses extended Pod and Homily seem to go largely unreciprocated and unappreciated except for Arrietty who holds a genuine like and concern for this ragamuffin drifter. Lastly, Norton continues to develop our soft, pampered, and opinionated matriarch, Homily, and allows her to slowly let go of her prejudices to begin appreciating and valuing Spiller and his contributions to her family.
So far, the series continues to delight with an exciting and fun ride while this book leaves readers with the most suspenseful cliffhanger yet as Mild Eye the gypsy is hot on their heels and the return of the nasty Mrs. Driver and Crampfurl reminds us that our friends’ journey is far from over. But, as Pod was reassuring Homily after another near escape by saying, “As I see it, in life as we live it—come this thing or that thing—there’s always some way to manage. Always has been and, like as not, always will be,” andI have no doubt that Pod, Homily, and Arrietty will continue to find some way to manage as long as they’re together.
* Book cover image attributed to: www.abebooks.com
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