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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
Moving can be an unsettling experience for anyone. For Arthur, who has only lived in one house in all his short life, moving was traumatic, to say the least. Until he sees the new house, which is really an old house. And he’s convinced it’s somehow connected to Caspar (you know, the friendly ghost). Well, not exactly, but there is some magic in the air and strange things start happening as soon as Arthur steps into the house. His bedtime bath takes him on a wild journey to some alternate time and space, to a place called Lar Lar Land, created by a man named Completely Lar Lar. You see, it’s all about imagination. And Arthur has plenty of imagination. In Lar Lar Land with Completely Lar Lar’s prime creation, the Completely Lar Lar Academy for Imagination, all you have to do is think or imagine it and it happens.
Si Baker’s middle-grade fantasy novel, Lar Lar Land: Meeting Completely Lar Lar, is full of imagination and imaginative adventures. The main character, Arthur, is swept off into a journey of a lifetime and there’s a lot of excitement to be had. The plot develops reasonably well with plenty of descriptive paragraphs to paint every character and scene in great detail. If the reader thinks the story is unbelievable at best, it’s because it is, but that’s the adventure and excitement that drives the story forward. Dialogue is well used and the creative, imaginative names of the various characters in Lar Lar Land are rather clever - though I must say, most of the female teachers at the Completely Lar Lar Academy for Imagination have rather derogatory names, like Mrs. Aria Bugupyourbutt, while the male teachers have more complimentary names, like Mr. Kelvin Super Fantastic Great. With all the imaginative silliness, this is certainly a fun read for young readers.