The Neverending Story by Michael Ende

I think this book is the kind of fantasy/fairy tale that I would have liked very much had I read it at a different time in my life or when I wasn’t feeling ill or something. As it was, I could see that it was a good story, even a great story, but somehow I didn’t appreciate it properly. There were some wonderful passages about books and reading and some episodes that made me think that the author might be quite profound if only I could figure out what profound thought it was that lay just beneath the surface of the story.

Bastian Balthazar Bux is a great name for a main character, I must say.

No, I’ve never seen the movie.

“I wonder,” he said to himself, “what’s in a book while it’s closed. Oh, I know it’s full of letters printed on paper, but all the same, something must be happening, because as soon as I open it, there’s a whole story with people I don’t know yet and all kinds of adventures and deeds and battles. And sometimes there are storms at sea, or it takes you to strange cities and countries. All those things are somehow shut up in a book. Of course, you have to read it to find out. But it’s already there, that”s the funny thing. I just wish I knew how it could be.”

5 thoughts on “The Neverending Story by Michael Ende

  1. That IS a wonderful quote from the book–I’ve seen the movie, but now I’m inspired again to find and read the book.

  2. I have this book on my wish list. I loved the movie as a kid. I think my kiddos would really enjoy both the book and the movie.

    Thank you for your wonderful site. I visit several times a week.

  3. Cat

    My kids really enjoyed the movie. I was bored. I’ve never read the book, though. Maybe I’ll pick it up at the library this summer for a read-aloud.

  4. I read the book years ago (when I was a much younger woman (without children), then saw the movie. I think I read several other books by Ende – can’t remember. Anyway, tastes change and I think I’d be hard-pressed to enjoy it now.

  5. After the first few chapters, I wasn’t at all impressed with it, but by the time I got to the end I found it quite meaningful. I think it was about the use of story to help ourselves personally grow, and the way we often have to muddle through a lot of dead ends before we find what is truly worth living for–but that we shouldn’t be upset about the dead ends because that’s part of the learning. Bastian is sort of a youthful Solomon in Ecclesiastes, trying one thing after another until he has grown to the place where he *can* do what he always knew he should do–reach out in love to his father.

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