REVIEW: The Wednesdays by Julie Bourbeau

REVIEW: The Wednesdays by Julie BourbeauThe Wednesdays by Julie Bourbeau
Published: Knopf Books for Young Readers (2012), Paperback, 245pg
Source: ALA 2012
Genres: Adventure, Contemporary Fantasy, Fantasy, Fiction

Max’s village is absolutely normal in every single way and on every single day—except Wednesday.

Most of the townsfolk shutter their windows and lock their doors to hide away from the many peculiar things that happen—things like cats getting stuck in the vacuum cleaner and birthday cakes meeting fiery and horrific ends. But Max is too curious for that, and so, breaking every rule in the village, he searches out the cause of all the Wednesday weirdness.

What he uncovers is a secret so devious—so dastardly and mischievous—that life as he knows it will never be the same. Max himself is not the same. Suddenly the mysterious little accidents so common on Wednesdays are happening to him on Thursdays, Fridays—even Saturdays!

What’s come over Max? And more importantly, is there any cure for a case of the Wednesdays? (from Goodreads)

This is a cute MG fantasy book with an interesting premise: creatures called Wednesdays show up in a certain village on the day of the same name, and they cause major trouble. Shoelaces snap, souffles collapse inward, people get stained blue, etc. etc. The protagonist, Max, is the sort of adventurous hero you need to lead this sort of story forward– he’s curious and intelligent and just a little bit too trusting. Those very things, though, land him in a more dangerous kind of trouble than what he’s used to with the Wednesdays, and with the help of his friends he tries to solve the mystery of the Wednesdays, save himself, and maybe even free the town from its plague of trouble. Woohoo!

Unfortunately, and this always annoys me when it happens, the mystery isn’t ever completely solved. We learn a bit about how Wednesdays are made (sort of), where they come from (vaguely), and why they cause trouble (well, it’s inferred). But nothing’s ever solidly figured out and it ends in that sort of magical realism way where you’re not sure of anything and things that stick out at an awkward angle just have to be accepted. Know what I mean?

I think it’d make a good TV movie for Disney, if that helps with anything. It’s got that late 1990s/early 2000s Disney live-action movie feel to it. (Think Halloweentown in tone.)

Read: July 15, 2012

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