Hillsborough’s John Claude Bemis, a musician and former elementary school teacher, writes for young readers. He engages them with imaginative magical fantasy. His latest, “Out of Abaton: The Wooden Prince,” takes the classic puppet-turning-into-real-boy story of Pinocchio into a wild adventure.
Master Geppetto is a brilliant inventor, on the run, being hunted down as a traitor to the emperor. Pinocchio is more than a marionette. He is an “automa,” which is a wooden mechanical servant that obeys, without question, the commands of its owner. Like the classical Pinocchio, this automa may be turning into a human.
This book is wonderfully complicated and stimulating.
EDITOR’S NOTES: D.G. Martin hosts “North Carolina Bookwatch” Sundays at noon and Thursdays at 5 p.m. on WUNC-TV. This week, John Claude Bemis talks about “Out of Abaton: The Wooden Prince” Sunday, May 21, at noon and Thursday, May 25 at 5 p.m.