The Book of Lost Things, Essential Revision Notes
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Table of Contents
The title refers to a book kept by King Jonathan which contains many things from ‘our world’ and his past. The title may also be understood as a metaphor for the relationship between David and the loss of his childhood, his plunge into the adult world. The title is also that of the book David writes (as an adult) about his adventures in the other world.
The novel begins in World War II London. The main character, David, is faced with his mother's slow death. David superstitiously believes that he will save his mother's life by living in a strict routine (e.g. getting up on the same foot, avoiding anything related to odd numbers). David thinks that his mother's eventual death occurred on the day that he made a mistake in his routine.
His father remarries a woman named Rose; they have a child, Georgie. While David tries to adapt to his new family, he begins to hear his books whispering and has ‘attacks’ during which he sees visions of a strange land. He finds himself lured to another world, hidden in a crack in the sunken garden of the family's new home. While exploring this fantasy world, David has many adventures and lives out his own fairy tale.
A feature of the novel is its retelling of traditional tales; characters, from Snow White to Rumpelstiltskin, are re-examined by the author. However, none of the tales are the same as when we last heard them.
Snow White is now gluttonous and no longer charming; her d...