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"Otherwood" by Pete Hautman starts out with a boy reminiscing about his grandfather, a man obsessed with quantum physics and alternate realities. Once young Stuey loses his best friend and meets a girl named Elly Rose, the impossible becomes possible.
Fantasy can either create a whole different world or establish one or two outcasts who believe and experience the extraordinary. Hautman chooses the latter. Reading the jacket insert, the reader only sees that "the unthinkable happens" without details so Hautman wants to reveal his secrets slowly; therefore, I will reveal little about the second half of the book. Trust me, it's spectacular.
Rana Buck and I have discussed reviewing something too early at the risk of a plot twist changing your entire set of ideas. I am sitting here twenty minutes after finishing and I am still digesting the ending. There is a lot going on for middle-grade literature.
It remains difficult to read this genre without picturing how my eldest child would react, Aimee Hutchison. It has no objectionable material until about 3/4 of the way through when a dark tale about Stuey's grandfather rears its ugly head. If your kid is older than 8, they can handle it.
The best words to describe "Otherwood" are smart and ambitious. It is for the young but has some great ideas about family, history, and possibility. You would do yourself a huge favor if you read it.