Review: Toby Alone by Timothe de Fombelle

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Guardian Review

Diane Samuels reviews Toby Alone by Timothe de Fombelle, translated by Sarah Adams


A big story about tiny people, this first volume of Timothe de Fombelle's award-winning two-part French saga takes the notion of discovering the universe in a grain of sand and applies it to a tree. Toby, the eponymous hero, is 13 years old and only a millimetre and a half tall; for him the distance from root to topmost leaves is an epic trek. This Lilliputian world is the setting for an ecological allegory, a microcosmic exploration of humanity's relationship with nature and a rites-of-passage adventure story...

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