When cornelia funke wrote the first volume of the fantasy series "reckless" more than ten years ago, the german writer already knew that this book series would be a world tour in the footsteps of marchen.
Now funke has sent the heroes of this story – the brothers jacob and will reckless – to a new land with the fourth volume now published. In "reckless – auf silberner fahrte" the two are drawn to japan.
"I came to russia, kazakhstan and mongolia with the third part, and so i naturally had to travel to asia," says funke to the german press agency in hamburg. India was an idea. "But because japan is also called the island of the foxes, this destination was a natural choice for my fox heroine."Fuchs is a shapeshifter, jacob’s girlfriend and has long since become the secret main character of the series.
It accompanies young jacob on his journey not only across continents, but also through worlds. Funke’s "reckless" is – inspired by the tales of brother grimm – the adventure journey of a treasure hunter who can travel to the world of the tales through a magic mirror and build a new life there. Soon he is followed by his younger brother will, who suddenly has his very own adventures to endure.
In the fourth volume, jacob is first on the lookout for his younger brother, in order to search for a special mirror with him. Will wants to take revenge on bosewicht spieler, meanwhile jacob is looking for a way to unravel an old deal with spieler for himself and fuchs. But for both of them, the path to their goal is fraught with obstacles, detours and opponents. They are accompanied by yanagita hideo, who brings all his own secrets with him.
The fourth "reckless" volume is even more compact than the previous three volumes. The reader has to fight his way through a labyrinth of 460 pages, which is as wordy as it is elegant. Funke expects a lot from her readers. Because not all thoughts and descriptions can be followed immediately. Many threads of the story float between the pages, only later to become intertwined with the past or the future of the heroes and their enemies. Many a reader was allowed to lose sight of the big picture at times.
Even funke herself admits this: "that’s naturally what happens when you write a series that has become so complex. One would almost like to advise the readers: wait until i have finished it completely and then read it in one go so that you can really see how it is all connected."
The world-famous author is always guided by the stories when writing her books. The fourth "reckless" volume, however, was a little unruly, says the 61-year-old with a laugh. "It was as unruly as the first one. In my opinion this is because of my villain. I kept getting the feeling that spieler was outsmarting me and that I was falling for his false ways."For her, stories are always a labyrinth in which one searches for the true story. "But this time spieler made me run into many a hedge."
But the reckless books are not a fairy tale for young people. "I advise not to go through the mirrors until you are 16, because the themes waiting behind them were sure to bore younger readers often."Ultimately, reckless is about love in all its facets. "Romantic love, the love between brothers, the love of parents. It’s really about the feeling of what and who we belong to."
Funke can well imagine a film adaptation of the series published by hamburger dressler-verlag. "But with reckless, i was only going to give my commitment to a tv series because the subject matter is so complex."The writer, who lives in the usa on an avocado farm in malibu, has already had the first offers for it.
Funke has already written more than 70 books for children and young adults, which have reached a worldwide circulation of 31 million. "Reckless" is one of funke’s most successful books, along with the "inkworld", "the wild chickens" and "dragon riders" series. In october, funke was awarded the special prize of the german youth literature award for her literary oeuvre.
Funke can’t yet say where the heroes and heroines of "reckless" will end up in the fifth and final volume of the series. But it would like to make still something to sudamerican and african marches, betray it already now.
– cornelia funke: reckless – auf silberner fahrte, dressler-verlag hamburg, 464 pages, 24.00 euros, ISBN 978-3-7915-0155-0.