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REVIEW: Liesl & Po by Lauren Oliver

Book Description

8 and up3 and up
Liesl lives in a tiny attic bedroom, locked away by her cruel stepmother. Her only friends are the shadows and the mice—until one night a ghost appears from the darkness. It is Po, who comes from the Other Side. Both Liesl and Po are lonely, but together they are less alone.
That same night, an alchemist's apprentice, Will, bungles an important delivery. He accidentally switches a box containing the most powerful magic in the world with one containing something decidedly less remarkable
Will's mistake has tremendous consequences for Liesl and Po, and it draws the three of them together on an extraordinary journey.
From New York Times bestselling author Lauren Oliver comes a luminous and magnificent novel that glows with rare magic, ghostly wonders, and a true friendship that lights even the darkest of places.

About the Author

Lauren Oliver captivated readers with her first novel, the New York Times bestseller Before I Fall, a Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year. She followed that up with Delirium, the first book in her bestselling, heart-stopping trilogy. Oliver is also the author of a luminous novel for younger readers, Liesl & Po. A graduate of the University of Chicago and NYU’s MFA program, she lives in Brooklyn, New York. 


  • Reading level: Ages 8 and up
  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins (October 4, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 006201451X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062014511


Liesl is locked in the atticby her stepmother after her father's death and draws to fill her time.  Po, a ghost, neither male nor female and Bundle, neither cat nor dog, visits her and said it has found her father on The Other Side and that he hasn't crossed over to the Beyond. Po will rely more messages if she draws for him.  Through Po, Liesl finds strength and determination to escape from her prison and return her father's ashes to next to her mother so he can be at peace and move to the Beyond.

Will, an orphan, has seen the girl in the attic from his many travels collecting materials and making deliveries for the Alchemist as his apprentice. He never imagines that their paths will cross but when he mixes up the ashes of Liesl's father with magic for the Lady Premier, their lives become dangerously intertwined.  As they both escape from their horrible lives and find their way to deliver the ashes to a restful place, more intrigue and danger meet then head on.

What an amazing book and wonderful story in the vein of The Tales of the Desperaux.  This is easily a story that can be read aloud by parents to their children for them to truly enjoy together.  Yes, it is a ghost story but nothing that should scare the younger readers and it should open the door for some interesting discussions about death.  Oliver has create a timeless tale and is a beautiful remembrance for the passing of a friend. 


    1. I've had my eye on this book, it looks great, thanks for the review.

    2. This does look like a great story!

    3. I absolutely loved this book! It's so beautiful- to look at and to read. You can tell that Lauren Oliver poured her heart into this one. And I agree- it would be a fantastic read-aloud.


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