April 21, 2018

Topsea Turvy Time • Macky Reads A Friendly Town That's Almost Always By the Ocean!

A friendly town that’s almost always by the sea. At least, that’s what it says on the sign that greets you as you enter Topsea. That’s certainly the sign that greeted Davy and his mom as they came to this town to try to start a new life. And what do they find? School lockers located at the bottom of the pool, warnings about tides and seaweed, lots of crabs and rock cats. Yes. Cats. That sit on rocks. And smile with all their teeth. 

Reading through this book felt like one part interactive encyclopedia, two parts a collection of childhood vignettes set amidst the most obscure and absurd backdrops this side of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, and three parts coming of age tale about loss and rebuilding. 

There are few places as whimsically absurd and obscurely enjoyable as Topsea. I don’t want to spoil anything, but the thing to note is that people in Topsea are just about as extraordinary as the place they live in. You don’t need to look beyond the kids Davy ends up befriending for proof, what with Quincy and his writing down every question he hears or Runa who makes up even more fantastical tales about an already fantastical Topsea. And how can we not pay attention to Nia, who finally got a chance to train and own a teacup pig?

The story starts out with Davy’s POV, inviting the reader into the slowly unfolding mystery of why he and his mother moved and why nobody in Topsea can EVER get his name correctly. Then, it shifts to the POV of the other kids, really giving the whole story a very unique reading experience. 

The chapters are bookended with random articles, public service announcements, illustrations and miscellaneous “communications” distributed amongst Topsea residents. Personally, I loved it all, and find that I would have been perfectly at home in Topsea had I grown up there. To be honest, a lot of it felt very ordinary to me (which only highlights how strange I am as a person), so Topsea felt like home and its residents my people. 

The ending felt very good but also left room for some more hijinks. Guess that means I’ll be waiting eagerly for a second book! Thank you Kir Fox and Shelley Coats for writing about a place that I feel I can come home to.

Publisher: Disney-Hyperion | Publication Date: April 17, 2018
Source: Hardcover received from the publisher (Thank you!)


  1. This books sounds so sweet, lovely review Alexa :)

  2. This book sounds so cool! I love the idea of rock cats!

  3. Ohh, awesome review Macky :D I love this cover so so so so much. <3 And I think I would enjoy this book too. Think I must go hunt it down :D Glad you loved it :)


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