This Isn’t What It Looks Like by Pseudonymous Bosch
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Book Source: Checked out from the library
The fourth book in the series that began with The Name of This Book is Secret picks up where the third volume left off. In the early chapters, narrator Bosch splits attention between two stories: one is about a girl who wakes up in what appears to be a medieval European village unable to remember who she is, where she is, how she got there, or why she happens to be invisible; the other is about Max-Ernest, who is desperately trying to awaken his friend Cass, who has been in a strange sort of coma since taking a dose of time-travel chocolate. The reader can quickly figure out how these two stories mesh (you’ve probably put it together just reading this review), and it’s a relief when the two stories converge into one.
There is a lot of silliness here, in the style of the writing as well as the plot. Cass and Max-Ernest remain the center ground for the reader amid the swirl of outrageous situations and goofy narration. Bosch reads much like Lemony Snicket, explaining things in footnotes and hinting at secrets never quite revealed. Several of these footnotes refer the reader back to previous installments in the series; jumping into the series with this book is definitely not recommended. A cliff-hanger ending (and the fact that our heroes still haven’t uncovered The Secret) leaves readers anxiously anticipating the final volume, slated for publication in October 2011.