Review of The Phantom Tollbooth audiobook

The Phantom Tollbooth
by Norton Juster; read by Rainn Wilson
Intermediate    Listening Library
4 CDs    4.68 hrs.    978-1-9848-8703-0    $20.00

Juster’s classic tale about a bored boy named Milo who finds adventure and fodder for the mind in the Lands Beyond gets new attention in this audio production read by actor Wilson (The Office). With a large cast of colorful characters, plenty of conversation, and sophisticated puns and wordplay, this book requires precise and purposeful pronunciation and energetic differentiation of voices, and Wilson succeeds. He conveys the sense of a crowd of people when needed, pauses just long enough for puns to click, and expresses, in turn, all the boredom, confusion, excitement, and bewilderment of our hero-in-the-making.

From the July/August 2019 issue of The Horn Book Magazine.

Autumn Allen
Autumn Allen

Autumn Allen is an educator, writer, critic and independent scholar of children's and young adult literature. She holds an MA-MFA in children's literature and writing for children from Simmons University, and a master's degree in education from Harvard University. She is the 2020-2021 Writer in Residence at the Boston Public Library.

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