From the creator of The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore and The Guardians of Childhood comes a grand adventure of valor, friendship, and a look into the mysterious world of favorite toys.
In the secret realm of toys, there are many mysteries.
There is the Code of the Toys, which is as ancient as childhood.
There’s also the magic of becoming a child’s favorite, the highest honor in the Toy World.
Made by hand by Billy’s mother, Ollie is a special toy, “a toy who will matter.” He becomes Billy’s best friend, confidant, pal, and yes, Billy’s “favorite.”
But there are villains in the Toy World, and Zozo, the clown king, is the most feared. He and his toy henchman (the Creeps) have sworn to steal and imprison favorite toys until they forget their children and become forever lost.
When Ollie is toynapped, Billy must rescue his beloved favorite from Zozo’s subterranean lair in the old Carnival Place, past the park, through the woods, and into the night.
Never has a journey of ten blocks been more epic.
Joyce (the Guardians of Childhood series) delivers a delicious remix of classic movie and storybook themes: imprisoned toys, talking junkyard friends, and a doll lost a generation ago. Six-and-a-half-year-old Billy returns from a family wedding to find that his beloved stuffed toy, Ollie, is gone. Readers know that he has been abducted by miniature mechanical henchmen and taken to the lair of Zozo, an eerie clown ruined by his own bitterness. Timid Ollie manages to escape and even spies Billy for a moment, only to find himself tossed away. Has Billy renounced him? In a rousing climax, Ollie and his loyal junkyard allies overcome Zozo and free the toys: "Okay," he tells his troops, "Our plan is gonna be: do some Robin Hood, and some Use the Force Luke, and some Trojan Horse, and some... Yellow Submarine." Though tense moments abound in this all-boy adventure, it's always clear that Billy and Ollie will prevail. Joyce's irresistible illustrations and joyous wordplay ("I am the Grand High Safemaster of Planet Billy," Ollie tells himself) are icing on the cake. Ages 7 11.