Starring: Brendan Fraser
Inkheart is a lovely story of a father, Mo, his daughter, Meg, and his wife, Resa. It takes place all over Europe, with fantastic and different venues. As the viewer enters the story, Mo has lost Resa and it all started out nine years ago....Mo, you see, is a Silvertongue, a reader who that can brings characters, novels, and history to life (as well as a book artisan that can repair the most damaged books). When Mo sits down to read Meg a story, the characters suddenly leap from the pages and into his life, but the consequence is that when characters come out, someone is pulled into the story. Resa is the person sucked into the novel for the characters who leave.
Young Mo and Meg
The story picks up these nine years later, Mo has been frantically searching all of Europe for the elusive copy of Inkheart. When he finally locates an unknown copy, Dustfinger, the legendary fire juggler, finds Mo, begging to be sent back into the story. But Mo has taken a vow, never to read aloud again, unless it's to bring Resa back. Dustfinger, desperate to return to his family seeks out the arch villain in the book, Capricorn, to help him. Capricorn, being the most dastardly of villains, agrees to help Dustfinger, only to stab him in the back after producing Mo and Meg. Capricorn's destruction of every known copy is complete, or so he thinks.
In the meantime, Resa has since been read out of the story, but without her voice. She is trapped in Capricorn's castle, unable to contact Mo. When Dustfinger discovers her true identity, he knows that this information will be enough to entice Mo to read aloud. Capricorn has kidnapped Meg as an end to his means, she has inherited her father's gift of Silvertongue, able to pull an even more sinister being from the book, The Shadow, the eater of all things.
As Meg is forced to read from the book or sacrifice her mother, she rewrites the story to cause The Shadow to turn back upon his creator, all the while turning Capricorn and his men to dust. She then returns everyone and thing back to where they belong, along with Toto from the Wizard of Oz.
Dustfinger, seeing the great lengths that Meg and Mo have to go to, knows he has missed his chance, and he will never see his wife and children again. But, Mo has promised to return him, so in exchange for one beautiful butterfly, Dustfinger is returned into the story, Inkheart.
Inkheart, Book 1 of the Trilogy
Author: Cornelia Funke
Publisher: Scholastic, Inc.
I originally read this book when it was published in 2003 (it was re-issued in June 2005). My daughter and I were captivated and entranced by the tale of a man who could pull characters from a page. Brendan Fraser was excellent as Mo, the Silvertongue, with just enough cheek to keep the story fun.
One of my favorite actors, Paul Bettany, plays Dustfinger, helping to tell the story. For a fun filled read and an alluring movie, try Inkheart. The movie deviants from the book, but with minimally distortion. Remember, there's always more to the book than the movie can allow. I highly recommend the book or the movie.