When Rumo is taken captive by a race of one-eyed giants, he little knows that it will set him off on an adventure into the perilous world of the Zamonian continent. The only sure thing he has chosen to follow is a silver thread in the sky. Will Rumo find the answers to all the questions he seeks in his life? Or will it lead to despair?
Walter Moers has written what I can only describe as an adventerous masterpiece woven into a fantasy realm about a dog called Rumo who is on a journey of self discovery. He has to overcome incredible adversity to beat the odds in a very unforgiving world.
In the beginning , the protagonist Rumo, lives a very privileged life as a pet on a Hackonian farm. Life was good for the young puppy until his quiet life is shattered when some one-eyed raiders called Demonocles kidnap him and hold him captive on a moving island called Roaming Rock.
Despite the horriific conditions, Rumo manages to survive thanks to the advice of a fellow captive called Volzotan Smyke. He eventually gains enough courage to break free from his captors. THE END. No it’s definitely not.
This is only one story that leads Rumo on an incredible journey of bravery, friendship, sacrifice, loss, and love.
Rumo and his miraculous adventures is the second book I’ve read by Walter Moers. The first was The Labyrinth of Dreaming Books which first introduced me to the world of Zamonia. I would say his books are catered to young adults even though the art on this book cover suggests it’s for children. Even my wife thought I was borrowing a children’s book. However, I was mesmerized by how the language was masterfully written to paint pictures and describe places that seemed to instantly come to life on every page.
His books are engaging and thoroughly entertaining so you can imagine my surprise when I discovered that Moers is actually German and his books have been translated to English.
Whoever translated the books, Bravo! I’ll make sure to like and subscribe to your channel since that’s what people want nowadays.
Back to Rumo. The best thing about the book is that it is engaging. At no point did I feel the author was filling in words for the sake of it. Because Zamonia is a made up place obviously, Moers made up a lot of words. For instance, Rumo is a WOLPERTING and his friend Smyke is a SHARK GRUB who got his knowledge from a NOCTURNOMATH called Professor Nightingale. You get the point. The complex words only add to the overall story and make it so much more richer and not many authors can do that.
All the characters are almost polar opposites of each other which adds to the intrigue especially in tense situations. The warriors and monsters are as thirsty for blood just as much as the professors and alchemists are as desperate for knowledge.
One of the most engaging parts of the book was when a tree called Yggdra Syl (good luck pronouncing that) talks passionately to Rumo about how trees are not as immobile and docile as people think they are. He says,
“We’re supposed to be the epitome of stability, reliability, impertability….That’s all nonsense! We’re really the most mobile living creatures in existence, we’re always on the move- always in every direction….We’re never still….Oak trees are really the finest symbol of mobility, but people insist on misinterpreting us. ” (367)
Yggdra Syl also goes on to talk about how intricate his roots explore the center of the earth.
“It’s like leafing through a book written by earth itself. Full of secrets! Full of surprises! Full of mysterious marvels! ” (367)
That final quote really sums up the story perfectly. Every character in the book has a story to tell and I could go on and on about how good it is but I don’t want to give it away.
Although this book is a work of fantasy, the themes talked about are very relatable. There is a carpenter called Ornt who people come to for advice. Not because he is very good at it but because he is a willing listener. Moers writes,
“People didn’t see Ornt because they believed he would advice them corectly. They consulted him because he relieved them of something they feared even more than the prosepct of their own funerals; the need to make a decision.” (347)
Whaaaaat ! So deep I had to pause for a few seconds after reading that. Anyway, I hope you liked this unorthodox book review and I highly recommend the book. 10 out of 10 stars for me.
Shout out to my local library for going out of their way to find this book for me. Have a great day.