Max lives in a perfectly normal town, except for the fact that on Wednesdays, nothing is normal. People have to endure such a bad luck on Wednesdays, that they lock up the shops, shutter their windows and stay at home on that day of the week, hoping the Wednesday will pass without any catastrophes like the TV breaking, shampoo suddenly turning to motor grease or cakes being ruined.
But one Wednesday, Max’s birthday even, he ignores the unwritten rule and goes out, determined to hunt down the Wednesday and find out why the town is suffering so badly. So he actually manages to find the Wednesday, a peculiar creature with long arms and legs and a bulky head. Soon Max realises that there is not just ONE Wednesday in town, but lots of them. After meeting them, Max finds himself attracting bad luck not only on Wednesdays but other days as well, plus there are some other disturbing changes going on with him.
The story is written in a light and funny way, I enjoyed little phases like “to catch a very bad case of the Wednesdays” or the fact that some dog is called “Thursday”, “because he always goes after Wednesdays, of course.”
To me it seemed like an ideal book to read to children, even if they are able to read themselves. The language is very vivid and you feel like you can “hear” the people talk. It surely is equally great for children to read it themselves as well though. It is recommended for readers aged 8 and up, but the story can be enjoyed at any age. It is told in a charming and sparkling way. I enjoyed the main character, Max, but also the minor parts like the Doctor, Max’s parents and his friend Noah are nicely described, very alive and easy to imagine. There are a lot of quirky moments, but no violence or really bad “Wednesday accidents”.
I have to say I didn’t like the style of the drawings (by Jason Beene) in the book too much, without being able to explain why. They just didn’t appeal to me personally at all. Maybe too close to “Disney style” without getting there? They are well done, just not my style.
I looked up Mount Tibidabo, where the novel is set and found out (shame on me for not knowing) that it is the signature mountain of Barcelona, from which you have an amazing view over the city and there really is an amusement park on top of the mountain with a Ferris wheel.
The author is actually a former CIA officer and this is her first novel.
It’s a wonderful book for children and also enjoyable for adults.
I obtained a digital copy of this book via NetGalley. @ cover image: Random House