The Neverending Story



by Michael Ende

Published 1979

So when I was a very little girl (as an aside, whenever I start stories about my young childhood days, I always verge on bursting out into song: “WHEN I WAS A YOUNG WARTHOG!” and I can’t even explain why ANYWAY), I can remember going to a sleepover for a friend’s birthday or something and we watched “The Neverending Story,” and all I remember was  being completely creeped out by it.  I was like six or maybe seven, so I think I was just too young to get it.  And so, I subconsciously avoided this book for years and years, until college, in fact, when a friend gave me this copy for my birthday, informing me that it was ridiculous that I had never read it.

Since then, I’ve read it several times, and I love it.  (Although I have to admit that I have still never watched the movie again!)  But my love for this book is a bit inexplicable.  The story is excellent, the pacing perfection, the characters unique and intriguing (although how I hate Ende’s “but that is another story for another time” gah seriously, what a cop out) and the observations about both Fantastica and our own world are insightful and thought-provoking.

I think I like the way that I don’t really like Bastien, and that Bastien isn’t a very good hero in many ways.  I love the imaginative creatures and Ende’s ability to describe them concisely yet well enough that I can immediately picture them in my mind.  This is fantasy at its best, in my mind.

So yes, this is a definite recommendation.  It’s a classic, it’s brilliant and beautiful writing, and it’s definitely worth your time.  5/5.