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Rem World: Where Nothing is Real and Everything is about to Disappear
     

Rem World: Where Nothing is Real and Everything is about to Disappear

by Rodman Philbrick
 
Arthur Woodbury is tired of being called fat. So he's purchased a special product that is supposed to help him lose weight. But when he puts on the helmet like the instructions say, his world vanishes before his eyes. Now he is trapped in REM World, a place where nothing is as it seems. And it's not enough just to find his way home. By entering REM World, Arthur

Overview

Arthur Woodbury is tired of being called fat. So he's purchased a special product that is supposed to help him lose weight. But when he puts on the helmet like the instructions say, his world vanishes before his eyes. Now he is trapped in REM World, a place where nothing is as it seems. And it's not enough just to find his way home. By entering REM World, Arthur accidentally released a terrible creature called Nothing and it's now up to Arthur to save the world!

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Booklist--May, 2000

Philbrick, Rodman. REM World. May 2000.192p. Scholastic/Blue Sky, $16.95 (0-439-08362-1).
Gr. 4-6. Ten-year-old Arthur Woodbury, aka "Biscuit Butt," among other lard-laden nicknames, sends away for the REM sleep machine, which promises weight loss over- night. But Arthur doesn't read the directions properly, and he finds himself stuck in the REM world. What's worse, the universe is about to be overtaken by the great Nothing, and the only one who can reverse the death sentence is Arthur. What follows is a fast and furious journey into an alternative universe that features such creatures as the Frog People, the Cloud People, river ser- pents, giants, and a horrifying demon. Together with his monkey-like guide, Morf, Arthur transcends a tidal wave, avoids being eaten by a giant, learns to fly, and, oh yes, saves the universe. This reads like a treatment of an animated movie, and although some readers will appreciate the nonstop action, the interesting Arthur, who becomes Arthur Courage, gets lost in the tumult. Still, librarians may want to suggest this to young Harry Potter fans, who will recognize the misfit hero in a strange, new world. -Ilene Cooper

Publishers Weekly
An 11-year-old orders a weight-loss device, but because he fails to follow the directions, he unleashes a force that could destroy the universe. Imaginative characters and a string of cliffhangers make this science-fiction novel a fun and faced-paced read, said PW. Ages 9-14. (May) Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Children's Literature - Children's Literature
Arthur, an overweight, fatherless adolescent, knew his mom didn't understand him. He spent many hours alone in their basement. And he knew that all he needed was a $9.99 miracle weight loss device, directions followed to the letter, and a night of sleep to wake up thinner and smarter. Upon awakening, or so he thought, he quickly learned that he only had read one side of the directions for the REM device and was now trapped in REM World with a peculiar character names Morf. Encounters with fog monsters, giants, cloud people, and Vydel's Mouth propel Arthur closer to both home and an acceptance and belief in himself. Imaginative, fast-paced action from the author of Freak the Mighty. 2000, Blue Sky Press/Scholastic, Ages 9 to 14, $16.95. Reviewer: Mary Sue Preissner
School Library Journal
Gr 3-6-This fantasy may appeal to a young audience unfamiliar with the genre, but it leaves much to be desired. Arthur Woodbury, 10, has had enough of fat jokes, so when he sees an ad for a sleep device that guarantees weight loss, he wastes no time. However, he fails to read the instructions completely, and the magic helmet deposits him in REM World, creating a conundrum that violates the laws of the universe. Arthur must get home, or the creeping Nothing will envelop Everything and the universe will cease to exist. In action-packed, cliff-hanging chapters, Arthur is helped by REM World beings ("Morf," "Grog," "Mr. Pockets") and earns himself a new name, Arthur Courage. The plot wanders from one surprising encounter to the next, with only a cursory mythology to explain Nothing and Everything, and an underdeveloped setting, so that REM World never quite feels like an actual place. Arthur is miraculously thin when he returns home, but the explanation that he's been unusually active over the course of a few days doesn't suffice. In fact, the issue of Arthur's body shape drops out of the picture while he's in REM World (it's the "courage" issue that surfaces there), so this framing device for the story seems hollow. It also is conspicuously reminiscent of Norton Juster's The Phantom Tollbooth (Knopf, 1961), in which this device is carried through and developed. Despite the thinness in plot, REM may hold appeal for some reluctant readers; Philbrick's narrative voice is exciting and pulls the right strings.-Nina Lindsay, Oakland Public Library, CA Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.|
Carden
What a pleasant relief to find REM World, by Rodman Philbrick! Here's an interesting, fast-paced, fantasy novel that is not loaded with violence and gore.
The Christian Science Monitor

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780439083621
Publisher:
Scholastic, Inc.
Publication date:
05/01/1900
Pages:
176
Product dimensions:
5.84(w) x 8.57(h) x 0.86(d)
Lexile:
700L (what's this?)
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

Meet the Author


Rodman Philbrick is the author of six award-winning novels for young readers. His first novel, Freak the Mighty, won the California Young Reader Medal. It was received with great acclaim and has sold more than a million copies. The sequel, Max the Mighty, received starred reviews, and his novel The Fire Pony was named a 1996 Capital Choice. His more recent books for the Blue Sky Press are REM World; The Last Book in the Universe, which was named an ALA Best Book for Young Adults; and The Young Man and the Sea, which received a starred review from School Library Journal. He and his wife live in Maine and the Florida Keys.

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