Wonderful story, great character development, great writing! Highly recommend this book. I thoroughly enjoyed it
This was my first completed read of 2024, and as with the rest of the series, I flew through it. This novella was released into the world on January 9th, although I read it on the 1st. Honestly, I probably could have read it sooner, because it was sitting on my e-reader for a little while, but I wanted to wait until closer to release day, especially knowing that it doesn’t take long to read a novella.
Anyway, this is the 9th installment in the Wayward Children series, and while most of them can basically be read in any order, I recommend reading them in publication order. That being said, this one makes the most sense if you’ve at least read the previous novella, Lost in the Moment and Found. I read and reviewed that one last year, so you can check out my thoughts for it as well.
I’m glad we got Antsy as our main character for two stories in a row. I love how connected she is to all of the Doors and the journey of finding things that she goes on through both of them.
Honestly I’ve really enjoyed the way McGuire sets up this series in a non-linear way. Some of the novellas are set in the past and introduce us to characters and show how they get to Eleanor West’s Home for Wayward Children, while other novellas are set in the “present” and we get to see several of these characters interacting with each other at the school.
With any of the “present” novellas, we could get little hints into other characters’ adventures or pasts…which could indicate another story already released or one that might be written and released in the future. That’s honestly why there’s a certain freedom in reading order…although again, even saying that, I still think reading them in publication order is the way to go.
Anyway, this one definitely lives up to the portal fantasy name, because thanks to Antsy’s ability to locate Doors, we get to visit a few different places, and once again there is a journey of learning, growth, discovery, and adventure. We get to see the dynamics between many of the wayward children, because some have had happier adventures than others, and what they’ve experienced has affected them in different ways. Some we met in story one and their adventure isn’t complete yet.
It’s cool that we get to see them pop up in so many different books and see different snippets on their journeys, although that does sometimes make it difficult to follow because there are just so many characters we’ve met over the course of nine novellas. I’m honestly to the point where I’m going to need to start going back and re-reading over all of these. Which isn’t something I’m upset about. I love McGuire’s ability to weave such an emotional, sometimes harrowing, sometimes whimsical, always fantastical story in such a short number of pages.
While I had read a couple McGuire books before this series, it was Wayward Children that moved her to the level of auto-buy author. Well…Wayward Children and then the Alchemical Journeys books.
Thank you to the publish and NetGalley for the review copy.
I love this series, some entries more than others; however, I'm really glad that we got more of Antsy's story with this one. I also loved the inclusion of more of the other children. I cannot wait for the next one.
<strong>Mislaid in Parts Half-Known is a direct sequel to Lost in the Moment and Found!</strong> It follows <em>Antsy as she settles into Eleanor West’s Home for Wayward Children</em> following the events of the previous book. Antsy's still struggling with the years that have been stolen from her, as she's not the age she looks like and is<strong> </strong>scared everyone else will notice. Luckily, she's <strong>got new friends on her side, including Cora, Christopher, Kaede and Sumi</strong>! I really liked seeing them again and loved how they were looking out for Antsy all this time. <em>She might be able to find the doors</em> - as she's got a knack for finding lost things - and in a school full of people desperate to go back to their worlds, this could cause a lot of problems.
<strong>The main theme of the book is breaking the cycle of abuse and hurt</strong>! I liked how the author picked Antsy's story back up and had her face the Shop of Lost Things again, including the shopkeeper who stole all these years from her. Anty's adamant that her successor should make an <em>informed</em> choice about whether to open the doors, as they cost time every time you open them. Vineta is still using young children and trying to justify it by saying that she didn't have it any better. <strong>There's a big emphasis on being hurt in the past not being an excuse to do the same to someone else</strong>. Having suffered doesn't mean you can inflict pain on others - Antsy knows this better than anyone.
<strong>The novella sadly felt a bit unfocused and all over the place</strong>. I much preferred<em> Lost in the Moment and Found</em> and <em>Where the Drowned Girls Go</em>, as they had a clear goal. In the beginning, <em>there was even another antagonist who wanted to use Antsy's powers but they quickly got dropped</em> and their story got wrapped up so quickly in the end. There's also a <strong>time skip right in the beginning</strong>, as the events of <em>Where the Drowned Girls Go</em> take place, which felt a bit jarring. The<strong> actual dinosaur world that's depicted on the cover only gets a small amount of page time</strong> and I wish we'd seen a novella completely about it because Stephanie was a great character and her world so interesting. It feels a <em>bit misleading to have the dinosaur on the cover</em> since it's not what the story is about.
I always enjoy being back in the world(s) with these characters. My problem with this entry in the series is the amount of recap taking place. I understand the desire to remind readers about things that happened before, but it takes up way too much space in such a short book. The new adventure teased on the cover seems negligible in comparison.
Well, this is basically Part Two of Vineta doesn't care about anything or anyone but herself. But we don't start there.
Actually, we start just before book #7 Where the Drowned Girls Go, because that's chronologically when Antsy arrives at Eleanor West's School for Wayward Children (and saves some of the others from the Whitethorn Institute. And why she ends up being closest friends with outspoken Sumi, and traumatised Cora. And sort of why she ends up becoming more or less cousin to Kade.
The issue is, after the girls come back to Eleanor's school, one of them lets slip that Antsy's being able to find anything that's lost could actually mean... being able to find Doors for those of them who want to go back to the worlds that spat them out. And that's a problem, because some of those girls have powers that make them less ethically inclined to persuade Antsy into doing exactly that.
Antsy, Kade, Sumi and Cora all end up spending time running through Doors in an attempt to evade her, which is what leads Antsy back to her original Door and brings us to first Vineta and then a satisfying conclusion of the book that came before this one. Honestly, I almost feel as though this and the last would have been one novel all together if not for the dedication to this being a series of novellas.
I was so excited to have the chance to read this novella! I've said it before, but I'll say it again; there is NOTHING I will not stop reading in order to start one of the Wayward Children books. They are hopeful and inclusive and sometimes biterly sad, and are the perfect reads to get out of literally any book slump. I'm happy to report that the feeling of this novella is much the same!
As with the other Wayward Children titles, themes include found family, trauma, self-relience, and hope. Every child who returns to our world is marked in some way from where they went, most of them wanting to find their door again so they can return.
Things I loved:
- This was such a great conclusion to Antsy's story! I wanted so badly for her to have a happy ending, and thought we would have to wait much, much longer
-We finally made it to one of the worlds I was most curious about!
-The school crew is back together and questing. While I love all of the characters, I have a soft spot for both Cora and Christoper. I was really glad they got some time here
Things I didn't care for as much:
-This one felt a bit less complete than the other volumes, thought it was clearly part 2 to the last novella
-The pacing felt a little off, and the stakes didn't feel as high.
I really did enjoy this title!
This continues to be one of my favorite fantasy series, and this one again delivers a fun adventure. A nice conclusion to Antsy's story from book 8, however this one had way more plot carryover than previous installments had and it took me a minute to remember what happened in the previous book. If you have the time, re-read that one before diving into this one!
In a school full of children who crossed through doorways into fantastic worlds, worlds ready to be everything they could need, and found themselves spit back out, new student Antsy’s ability to find anything could threaten the school more than any quest ever has. If she can find anything, why not doors? On the run to avoid once again being forced to open doors for other people, Antsy and a party of friends will find themselves crossing through worlds both beautiful and terrible, including the Shop Where the Lost Things Go. The students will risk their lives, face unimaginable danger and memories that cut like a knife, and Antsy will be faced will having to try and keep Vineta and Hudson to their promise.
Every year I look forward to Seanan McGuire’s next Wayward Children novella. Mislaid in Parts Half Known is no exception to this and, given its focus on Lost in the Moment and Found’s protagonist, Antsy, I found myself wondering how her quest would affect the other students who accompanied her as she went on the run. How does one react to the idea of being able to go back to the home that cast them out without having to be sure?
Antsy is definitely the protagonist of this book but it feels, in part, like an exploration of what it means to be sure. Sumi knows that she will return to Confection someday, so she is entirely untempted by Antsy’s ability to find her door. But then mean girl Seraphina is so desperate to return that she kicks off the plot trying to force Antsy to do her bidding. Can one be sure if they just have someone else find and open their door? What does it mean for Antsy to come back to the Shop when she is not sure of her place in it or in the world she originated from? Of course, most of the questing books are an exploration of what it means to be sure. Cora has had an entire arc covering that and it has been handled fantastically.
As ever, the characters are deftly handled. Antsy walks the line of trying to act as old as she looks while also needing to catch up and being adrift at the school. Sumi is a delightful blend of offbeat and terrifying and so, so sure of her future. We see more of Elenore West without the grounding that Lundy provided, categorizing every student as having gone to a Nonsense world and feeling less connected to the school and more ready to go back to her door. More even than that, we see Kade get to question his role as the sort of leader of this group of chaotic heroes.
I want to chew on Mislaid in Parts Half Known, it is a fairly straight forward story but one that does fascinating things with the characters it features, things that I am sure will pay off in their own time but that I also want to see how much more will layer overtop of them. It makes me want to see so much more of this setting, to see more of the characters settling into themselves and finding out what being sure means for them. But it also leaves me a little melancholy, there is an odd feeling of permanence to one of the character bits that is both amazingly written and a bit of a tear jerker for me. Mislaid in Parts Half Known more than earns a five out of five. If you get the chance to read the Wayward Children series, be sure to take it.
This is Seanan McGuire's 9th installment in the Wayward Children series. This continues the trend of alternating between a book with a character in a new world and one starting at The School for Wayward Children.
Antsy is the newest arrival to the school and her gift of being able to find anything has immediately put a target on her back. Everyone wants her to help them find their doors so they can return to their previous rules. So despite the school's rules, a group leaves the school and embarks on yet another quest.
I loved that we got to see the whole group back together and also go back to the world Antsy came from to tie up everything from her book. As long as Seanan McGuire keeps writing these books, I will keep reading them!
Yet another absolutely amazing Wayward Children book! I know that they'll end at some point, but I'm immensely grateful that point has not arrived.
Another great instalment in the Wayward children’s series.
I love the continuation on from the last book which was my favourite so far of the whole series. However I also enjoyed how this included some more lighthearted moments and more interactions between the characters we know and love.
Still hitting with the emotional moments and I have become so attached to these characters that I just love seeing their journeys.
Also love dinosaurs so that was an excellent inclusion for me and I really liked how they were incorporated.
I don't really know how to talk about my thoughts on this book. Its possibly the definition of a 3 star book. It was fine, no issues with it while reading, but it also didn't do anything special. It felt like a little bit of reintroduction to some characters, felt like a good bye to some other characters, and a platform for Sumi to preach from. This story almost feels like its beating the reader over the head with moral advice.
Its not bad, and honestly if you're this far in the series then read it. Its also not the most exciting book in the series. I still plan to continue reading whatever comes out next year.
Antsy feels like a misfit even at Eleanor West's School for Wayward Children. But she can find anything, and when some students learn this, they intuit that maybe Ansty can find them their doors home. And so she is forced to flee and ultimate ends up back in her door-world trying to right a wrong and be sure.
I really liked this. I'm not always a huge fan of the quest novellas, but this felt like a continuation of the last story. It took me a minute to remember everything, but I really loved the message about sometimes you're not ready for the thing you want most in the world and sometimes being a part of change can make you ready. I love Antsy's story and seeing her become more confident and figure out what she wants. Recommend!
Thank you to netgalley and the author for the advanced e-copy!
Mislaid in Parts Half-Known
By: Seanan McGuire
Publish Date: 9 January 2024
Publisher: Tor Publishing Group, Tordotcom
general fiction (adult)/ Sci Fi and Fantasy
100 Book ReviewsProfessional Reader
I would like to thank both NetGalley and Tor Publishing for allowing me to read and review this book.
I have loved this series since I started reading it years ago. She writes one every year and they always come out in January. This is the ninth book in the series. I gave this book 4 stars.
This book is based off the eighth book which I am sad to say I haven’t read yet. So, I was just a little lost, but it didn’t matter too much because she gave enough information for me to figure out what had happened.
In this book Antsy is new to the school and she doesn’t feel like she fits in. She is a young girl in a teenage body. This is explained in the book. She has a talent to find lost things and has just discovered that she can tell what is behind the door.
Her and a few classmates go on an unexpected quest to get away from a fellow classmate who can use her looks to get what she wants. Antsy ends up taking them through Kades door and he is a little upset about it. He doesn’t want to be there, and he has a good reason for it. They aren’t there for very long, as Antsy finds another door and this one leads to her world. Things happen there that makes her, and her classmates go on another quest before they can go back home.
I am sure I would have enjoyed this book a little more if I had read the other book before this. It really doesn’t matter because these are quick reads and I have a blast reading them. If you like the witch and the wardrobe series, you will like this series.
In Mislaid in Parts Half-Kmown, Antsy is back and we visit Prism briefly. While trying to escape the allure of Seraphina, Antsy takes the gang on an adventure through several doors, including a dinosaur world, and ultimately, they end back in the shop of lost things, where Antsy will have a tough decision to make. Be sure.
January can be a bummer, but for several years, I’ve had adventures with friends from Eleanor’s school to look forward to. The books in this series are short, so you can read them in a single setting if you want. They build on each other, and each book, we get to revisit characters from previous books while being introduced to new characters and going on new adventures. I look forward to them every year.
This was another fantastic addition to the wayward children series. It definitely feels like that special touch in the first four books has diminished a bit, especially in regards to that love for the children and that awe of their worlds. Rushing through them has me wanting more of that delving into the workings of the actual worlds these doorways lead to and how these children truly need them. I understand this was more about what Antsy truly needed, and her choice to be sure. I loved that we got the gang back together. Can't wait to see what comes next from these worlds. Can I have my own door??
Review: Mislaid in Parts Half-Known by Seanan McGuire
Oh, how I love this series. My wish last book was to see more of the school and the characters I’ve grown to love so much, and I did… oh I did.
This was interesting because it focused on many of the characters again, which I was so happy about. I love Cora and I loved her growth in this book and seeing her just a bit more happy.
I also enjoyed Antsy’s character arc and growth, and enjoyed seeing more of Emily (who I also really love now).
This instalment was happy and sad as they all tend to be, but the ending especially has me in those emotions and you will see why when you read it.
I can’t wait for the next book, as usual. I highly recommend this series, to honestly everyone. It’s unique and heartwarming and heartbreaking.
Thank you @torbooks for the review copy!
I CRIED. New favorite in the series I think, but definitely not one of the more "stand alone" ones. I love where this series is going, love the way we're getting to see new worlds that have so much depth and life to them, LOVED learning about Seraphina's world and hope we get to see it as well as the Trenches explored more in future books. We definitely haven't visited water-related worlds enough!
Loved the lessons & bits about trauma here, in terms of both surviving & inflicting it. I feel like there was some foreshadowing here about stuff going on at Eleanor's school, so I'm wondering where that's going to go, but overall loved how this wrapped up so much!!
ALSO, DINOSAURS!!! SO so so so fun.
MISLAID IN PARTS HALF-KNOWN by @seananmcguire is book number 9 in this intricate portal fantasy novella series known as THE WAYWARD CHILDREN. If you are unfamiliar, these books all revolve around the concept that some children are called to a special portal world unique to them alone. Sometimes, for multiple reasons, these children somehow wind up being ejected from their portal world. Being one of these children once herself, Eleanor West opened up her SCHOOL FOR WAYWARD CHILDREN in which she tries to help the children adjust back into the "real world."
While all of the books are a continuing story, this one felt like an ACT II to Antsy's story in LOST IN THE MOMENT AND FOUND, book 8. While I wouldn't say this was my favorite of the series, I really love all of these and every one of them is at least solid 4 stars for me. In this installment, Antsy gets to confront the adults that she thought were protecting her when in truth, they were keeping a very important secret from her as well that will affect the rest of her life.
All of these books are at their core about the human yearning to belong while feeling like you don't quite fit into the world and if you have ever felt this way in your life due to being an outsider, being discriminated against, or even just feeling like the perpetually misunderstood or new person, these will tug at your heart strings. The worldbuilding of the individual portals and the character development are supurb in this series! My favorite part of these stories, though, are the found family aspects of these wayward children assisting, comforting and fighting for each other as they each hope to get back to their own personal wonderland.
Thank you to the author, @netgalley, and the publishers @macmillan.audio / @macmillanusa for the e/audio-ARCs and the finished copy. I can't get enough of this series and hope you enjoy it if you plan to dive in! Today is the day this one graces shelves.
If there was a portal world all for you, what do you think it would be like? Mine would most certainly be a gothic library full of books, cats and snacks. 🤓
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