Hildegunst von Mythenmetz, hailed as Zamonia's greatest writer, is on vacation in Lindworm Castle when a disturbing message reaches him, and he must return to Bookholm to investigate a mystery. The magnificently rebuilt city has once again become a metropolis of storytelling and the book trade. Mythenmetz encounters old friends and new denizens of the city--and the shadowy "Invisible Theater." Astonishingly inventive, amusing, and engrossing, this is a captivating story from the wild imagination of Walter Moers.
Optimus Yarnspinner's legendary success as a Zamonian author has caused him to become cut off from the Orm (the force of literary inspiration), a predicament he's quite unaware of until a mysterious letter written in his own pedantic style and signed in his name sends him on a quest to Bookholm. The great city of books was burned two centuries before by the Shadow King, and has been rebuilt as a modern book metropolis. Optimus visited Bookholm's dark corners once before in The City of Dreaming Books but is still unprepared to discover the twisted Invisible Theater and the still-ruined Darkman Sector, a "blank space on the map" of the city. Moers's Munchhausen-esque yarn is en-hanced by his equally wild illustrations. Though much of the book overwhelms its readers with world-building, fans will enjoy journeying through Optimus's battle with darkness.