The Neverending Story

By Michael Ende

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Readers` Reviews

★ ★ ★ ★ ★
lisa lim
This work is in a league of its own. I've never seen anything as imaginative as this. It even beats the works of Lewis Carroll in that department. You have to pay attention to every word or else you may miss something fantastic.

So many insane sights are described in this book that it's impossible to remember them all. There's a rabbit covered in colorful feathers, there's a striped hippopotamus whose front and back ends walk independently, there's a man shaving a mirror, there's a tree that's its own grandmother, the list goes on and on. I think since there are so many wacky things that are so briefly mentioned, many of these things don't get the popularity they deserve.

The second half of the book really shines and sets up some very interesting scenarios totally absent from any of the Neverending Story movies, particularly the existance of the lion in the Desert of Many Colors. That poor lion has it rough since Bastian creates an environment for him where he is doomed to eternal loneliness.

I noticed no real problems with the translation; there may be a few differences like calling goose bumps goose flesh, but that might just be a new creative way of describing an old term and has nothing to do with translation.

Regardless of whether you get a nice colorful hardcover version, or a cheaper paperback version like I did, don't pass this story up.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
patrick mugumya
The Never Ending Story, which is a originally German, was introduced to the United States a few decades ago. Michael Ende is know for numerous works of fantastical fiction, which contains meaningful characters. What makes this book unique is its concept of comparisons and contrasts throughout every page. This is evident when Atreyu is on his quest and meets the three gates. However, many, who have seen the film, do not realize that the novel consists of 26 chapters. You can also name them with the alphabet. Thus, this book is a great method for teaching students the Alphabet, without using rote methods.

The plot and theme are well structured and are perfect for elementary, middle school, and secondary school students. It is also a treasure for teachers and parents alike who want to read to their children.

Although there are people that make criticism of this book, they need to realize that this book presupposes a certain age, which is why the wording is simple. Also, it is meant to be easily understood.

In education, it provides a i+1 concept for 3rd to 5th grade students. However, it enjoyable as a fun read for those who grew up with the book.

It is my hope that this short review is helpful for educators and parents.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
lag21245
This is the story of ten year old Bastian. Bastian's mother died, his father is grieving and not paying him any attention, and he gets bullied all the time by kids at school. Bastian uses reading and making up stories as an escape from his life. One day, running from bullies from school, Bastian finds himself hiding in a bookstore. There he discovers a book called "The Neverending Story" that transports him to another world literally. Bastian finds that in this new world he is able to be the person he always imagined himself being. But, is that the person he really wants to be?

I have loved the movie version of this book since I was a kid, so needless to say I was looking forward to reading it. The book was great! I was quite surprised to find out the movie only covered the first half of the book though. After that, the story was all new to me! I thought it was neat that my copy of the book is written in red when the story is taking place in the human world and in blue when the story is taking place in Fantastica. The story actually became quite a bit darker in the second half and the movie would never lead you to believe that. I did start losing interest in the last few chapters, but all in all, it was a pretty good read.
Strega Nona: An Old Tale Retold :: God. Love. Marriage. Sex. And the Never-Ending Story of Male and Female. :: God. Love. Marriage. Sex. And the Never-Ending Story of Male and Female. :: The Neverending Story (A Puffin Book) by Michael Ende (2014-07-03) :: Threads of Silk
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
nancy strange
A gorgeous book, reminiscent of every book you've read, somehow. That's definitely the intention.
For those familiar with the movie, it covers about half the book - a wise choice, really. The second half isn't bad, just unfilmable. This is one of the first books I've read that I didn't want a movie of - it is too perfect in its appeal to imagination and dreams.
It's hard to review, really, because there's so much going on - the salvation of Fantastica, Bastian's fight for his soul, and even the little side stories that are hinted at and never finished. It's a book somehow bigger than it is, grander than it is. By itself, it's relatively simple, but there's so much beneath the surface.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
christine myers
Fans of the 1980s film version of Michael Ende's NeverEnding Story will love this book - although they may be surprised to find that the movie tells only half the tale.

The NeverEnding Story is a book within a book: it begins with the story of Bastian, a lonely school-age boy who picks up "The NeverEnding Story" in an old bookstore. As Bastian begins to read, the story shifts back and forth between a fantasy novel about a hero's quest to save the dying world of Fantastica, and Bastian's own somewhat parallel feelings. The film follows the first half of the book fairly closely - but it ends when Bastian enters Fantastica, while the second half of the novel is just beginning. The rest of the story features even more extraordinary magical beings and locations, as Bastian struggles to balance the best and worst aspects of power and to find his true self.

A fabulous tale, beautifully written and perfect for reading out loud. Full of imaginative lands like the Desert of Colors and the lake of tears, as well as unforgettable characters like the old man of wandering mountain and the foolish former emporers who've forgotten themselves.
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
hannah kaplan
The Neverending Story was a book club book for the month of March. To be honest it would not have been a book I would have chosen for myself.I'm not a fan of reading a book after I already seen the movie. I remember really liking the movie as a kid and reading the book it was hard to separate the two at first. Cause even though the character were described totally differently from the movie I kept picture them their movie versions. Spoiler alert. Atreyu skin is suppose to be green and Bastian is suppose to be a chubby bowlegged kid. Besides those subtle difference from the two versions the book is pretty similar to the movie for about 40% of it. That was when the book really changes and the MC Bastian basically changes personalities. I did not like that at all. He becomes an arrogant jerk and I really was almost lost with his story. He does have some redeeming qualities but it still left a bad taste for me. Overall I did like the story but thought it was really long. The Neverending Story title never felt so true and I really wish it had ended sooner.

I think this book might be more suitable for kids instead of adults. I think they might like all the adventures.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
gail
I loved this book as a child. I had an original edition and regret getting rid of it. As an adult, I purchased a copy of a new edition so my own children could read it. This was an amazing book - especially for a child who empathized with the main character about feeling like an outcast. I would recommend this book for children (who are reading at an appropriate level) and adults. Not for children under 10, unless they are advanced readers and can handle unpleasant situations. I hated the movie - they did a terrible job with the first movie and then tried to make up for it with the second movie and it just fell flat. (Note: this is neither the edition that I owned originally nor the edition that I currently own, but the story is the same.)
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
april schilpp
Bastian Balthazar Bux's life is not faring too good. There are many bullies at his school, who usually pick on him,he is fat and tubby and his father hasn't spoken to him ever since his mother's death. One day when Bastian passes a bookshop something makes him enter. When he enters he finds Mr.Coreandar, the shopkeeper reading a book. Bastian is mesmerized by the book's cover the minute his eyes are laid on it. Knowing that the book probably costs good money, Bastian picks up the book and runs out of the store. He then goes to his schoolhouse and goes to the attic where no one else ever goes. He begins to read the book ( The Neverending Story) and then is sent into the book as a hero. Bastian loves the country (Fantastica) and doesn't want to leave. People find him as the savior of their land for saving the childlike empress and also have no intention of forcing him to leave. During the book Bastian meets many friends like, Falkor, the luckdragon, and Artreyu, the hero who brings Bastian to Fantastica. This is a great read, but you will have to pay a lot of attention to the book because there are many, many, characters in the book. At times the book has it's tedious points, but I finished this book knowing that it was a 4 star book.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
winter haze
I, like Bastien found this book in a second hand book store, and was quickly sucked in.

Some parts seemed childish in the way they were written, but I later found out it was tansalated from some germanic language.

I really loved how each of the 26 chapters start w/ a differnt letter of the alphabet, and how in the tradicion of the old middle-ages books each letter was decorated.

It would have been 5 stars but I didn't like how Bastian seemed to turn bad, and when he was walking through Fantastica and every one was following him is stupfied awe kinda seemed to drone on for awhile.

It is, however, a VERY worthwhile read,I am just impatient, it is for anyone wether or not they like fantasey.

Although this story is contained in 26 chapters and between two covers, the real neverending story starts when you close it and sit in awe of its awesomeness, although we all know, and sadly accept that there is no alternet reality, this book can give you a basis for creating your own secreat world, weather its in Fantastica, your own imaginary placeor in the world of another aother, this bookm will really change the way you look at fantasy. BRAVO ENDE
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
peter dicicco
When you start to read this book you notice how extraordinarly different it is from any other fantasy book. Micheal Ende had to have had a big imagination when writing. He laid out an array of characters and settings to startle and amaze the reader. Each person, place, or thing is placed perfectly in the plot to make a wonderful story.
The whole set-up of the story is very aquard, but at the same time interesting. It's almost as if there are two storys in one.(The second story starts around the chapter called "Perilin the Night Forest".) Atreyu is confident and devotes himself to his quest. He's even more confident when he discovers a luckdragon named Falkor. The Childlike Empress seems almost too calm on the circumstances. The detail of her makes her come to life more than any character in the book! Xayide is just pure evil, and enhances the plot line to make it even more interesting. And Bastian is the definition of utter rejection. With zero self-confidence he becomes literally trapped inside the book, and is only happy after he wishes himself to be the vision of a perfect boy.
The settings are one of my favorite parts about the book. The Howling Forest,the Ivory Tower, and the Swamps of Sadness are only a few of the settings. They are all different and interesting in there own way, and are very enjoyable to read.
If you are interested in fantasy books then read this. I myself have been very interested in fantasy books, and now that's almost all I read! It won't hurt to open a book and read a few pages. So go ahead and try it. There is only one imperfection to it. The Neverending Story ... ends too soon!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
artavie dugan
Bastian Balthazar Bux escapes his dreary life by reading books,and when he stumbles upon an old volume entitled ''The Never Ending Story'' he feels he must have it. In order to read the book,he hides in the school attic in hope that no one will find him. From the very first chapter,he is captivated by the magical world of Fantastica (the setting ot the story).But he discovers he has an important mission to fufill in this unusual world and is physically transported to the land of Fantastica. When he arrives, he discovers he has the ability to ''wish'' things into Fantastica, but with each wish, he looses part of his true idedntity. For me, this means we must visit out imaginations, and yet stay in tact with reality. The world Ende creates is as strange and wondorous as ''Wonderland'' or ''Oz'', and with an equal amount of charms and surprises.

In the begginnig, the world is presented as a dull and dreary place, as Batian sees it. When he comes back from Fantastica, we see the world through Bastian's enlightened eyes.

THE NEVER ENDING STORY leaves the reader with a shimering feeling of wonder, which stays with him long after the cover is closed.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
zac frank
It is with infinite sadness that I discovered some time ago about Michael Ende's passing away several years ago. His fun and lively "Jim" books (fantasy books containing a black boy as the main protagonist, something unusual even today), and the simple, deeply imaginative "Momo" were some of the first fantasy books I have read. Then, in my teen years, I read "The Neverending Story". Like everyone else, I saw the movie first, at age 9 or so. But I had known Ende's work beforehand, and knew that I will not be disappointed.

The NeverEnding story is a work of deeply haunting, surrealistic fantasy. Don't expect your friendly hobbits and wizards here (not that there's anything wrong with them!) Ende's father was a surrealistic painter, and his son appeared to have been influenced by his vision. His books are more like fairy tales than the carefully structured worlds and characterization in the books of Tolkien and C.S. Lewis (the other two early fantasy masters), and are likewise influenced by Eastern myths, not only Western ones. Ever wondered what is the child Empress? Well, the beauty of Ende's work is that he leaves many questioned unanswered, much like in the ancient fairy tales. But to know the answers, dig a little into Eastern myths of India. (Bigger hint: watch Bill Moyers' famous interview of Joseph Campbell.)

Bastian's journeys through Fantasia, first through Atreyu, then, in the considerably darker and more powerful second half of the book, on his own, are journeys of self-discovery. He tastes not only the delight of losing himself in his imagination, but the profound danger of literally "drowning in fantasy", receiving everything he ever dreamed of. He falters and almost fails, but the loyalty of his clear-sighted friend saves him, and he receives the deepest wish of his heart. (In many ways, Atreyu is the hero of the story, and Bastian is actually a sort of anti-hero, something unusual in children's books.)

Ende's world is the neverending world of imagination. Thus, unlike the world of Middle Earth or Narnia, which are constructed around "complete", structured worlds, it has no limits, containing all the creatures humankind ever dreamed of. Some readers complained about the brief introduction and then dismissal of the many fantastic creatures populating Fantasia (note- I use the spelling of the translation I read, which is not English). However, this is part of the profound enchantment of the story. These creatures do not fit into a careful hierarchy, are not "characters" in the classical sense of the word. Instead, they weave the mysterious and semi-surrealistic tapestry of the world that Bastian must traverse in his journey for self-discovery. For me, this is the beauty of the book. I never liked knowing too much about Tolkien's Middle Earth, for example; fitting it into a specified world view which I do not share ruined it for me somewhat. Additionally, some of the mystery, and thus the power of the fantasy, is lost forever when the mechanics of the world are explained. Ende's work remains powerful because of its mystery, even its surrealism. It is a modern fairy tale in every sense of the word, and a deeply moving one at that, on par with the best fantasy written.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
geoffrey h goodwin
Really the only thing one can do for a review of this book is compare it to the movie. The one thing that pops to mind that the movie really did right (besides staying true to the feel of the book, which is pretty huge in and of itself) is the school attic where Bastian reads the book. It is exactly as described in the story. It’s so perfect, I had to do a little happy clap. Atreyu’s journey is a lot more detailed in the book than the movie. There is more that happens. His meeting with Falkor is a bit more natural than the deus ex machina it is in the movie. His time through the three gates of the Southern Oracle is much more interesting and detailed in the book. The ending in the movie is much happier than what actually happens in the novel. This is because the entire second half of the book is not dealt with at all in the movie.

The sadder “ending” leads straight into the second half of the book which deals with Bastian’s adventures in Fantastica (as it is rendered in the book, rather than the Fantasia it is in the movie). The Childlike Empress has to work much harder to get him there than she does in the movie. This makes Bastian a much more likable character in the movie. In the book he’s more of a coward, and his adventures have much to teach him. This second part of the story reminds me simultaneously of The Chronicles of Narnia and Gulliver’s Travels. It was interesting to see Bastian’s journey to find what he really wanted. And the real ending of the story is quite as happy as the movie.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
suzze tiernan
When a young boy named Bastian "borrows" a book from a shop, he has no idea that he is about to embark on a journey of his own. The book speaks of a place called Fantasia (or Fantastica, depending on the translation) that is built upon the dreams and fantasies of humans. Sadly, Fantasia is crumbling and its Childlike Empress is dying. Because people are not using their imaginations as much as they once were, everything is being overcome by The Nothing, a force which is sweeping the land at an alarming rate. The Nothing's evil henchman is a frightening wolf named Gmork. It is up to Atreyu, a warrior, to stop the spread of the Nothing.

There are no words to describe this story, and there are a million words to describe this story. There are a million stories in this book, and there is just one story. I read this book as a young child, and my love for it has never dimished. I keep my copy in pristine condition. If you clapped for Tinker Bell in Peter Pan but you haven't read this book, you must read it now, because you know what it is to imagine and to believe.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
colin winnette
I remember seeing the Neverending Story when I was 6, and it became one of those films I watched again and again. It wasn't until I was in College that I found a copy of the original Michael Ende story. I was amazed! It was incredible to find how Ende had crafted the world of "Fantastica" (In the film, it is called "Fantasia"). The story begins with Bastian Balthazar Bux, a 10-year old boy who is bullied at school for being somewhat overweight, and for his vivid imagination. One day, he stumbles into Mr. Coreander's Book Store, where he finds the book "The NeverEnding Story." Bastian takes the book without Coreander seeing him, and runs with it to his school's attic, where he proceeds to read it. In the pages of the book, he learns that Fantastica's ruler, The Childlike Empress, has fallen ill. Even moreso, the land is being swallowed up by a blackness that can only be described as "Nothing." The Empress sends a messenger to find Atreyu, a young warrior who she deems worthy to help her. Given the Auryn (the symbol of a servant for the Empress), Atreyu begins his quest that takes him to the Southern Oracle, to the clutches of the hideous Ygremal, and more. Pretty soon, Bastian finds that the story is so engrossing, that at certain points, he seems to be becoming intertwined into it! There is so much more to tell, but I recommend this book! If you like books such as the "Harry Potter" series, with it's inventive cast of creatures, people and lands, "The NeverEnding Story" should feel right at home with you. There are such creatures as Rock-Eaters, Tinys, Luckdragons, and many too numerous to list. By the time you finish reading it, you'll want to read it again.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
xiaoshan sun
The Neverending Story is truly a story for all ages. Anyone who wants a fantasy as exciting and moving as the Harry Potter books can look here. Also here, is a story with multiple layers of meaning giving the reader much that is profound to think about.
I won't go far into the story because it seems too complex for this type of review. Many of the traditional elements of fantasy are here, but they are thrown together in a wholly original way. There are a lot of characters, some of whom have to serve a messianic figures for the dieing world of Fantastica. There is a lot of exciting action, and there a a number of very moving relationships.
There are several ways to look at this novel beyond just the story; it definitely deserves a second reading. For one thing, deals with Bastian's existential quest for self-discovery, and it contrasts Atreyu's and Bastian's methods. There is also a lot of Christian symbolism as a Messianic figure is needed to save Fantastica from the Nothing. It also seemed to me that Baltasar's character could sometimes be viewed as a symbol for the Christian Church since Christ's days and perhaps as a commentary for how to once again purify it.
The Neverending Story is truly a masterpiece of Literature for both children and adults. Anyone can read this brilliant story and be entertained and come away with it with some profound insights. The Neverending Story will, I'm sure, always live up to its title; I cannot imagine any generation coming along who will not be totally enraptured by it.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
apricotteacup
Okay, i first received a copy of this book on my 7th birthday. I read it then cover to cover (and by the way, the red and green type at the beginning turns almost exclusively to dark green pretty quickly, so it's not annoying, it's COOL). It would be very confusing actually without the color change because you dart back and forth between the fantasy world and the real world within a matter of sentances and without the color change, you might become quite lost. And i've read it cover to cover every year since then (I am now 23) and it is still one of my absolute favorites!!! It is an absolute epic though and one you won't want to put down until you find out what happens next, so definately set aside a 3-day weekend unless you want to stay up 24 hours straight reading!! The illustrations that embellish the first letter of each of the chapters ( each chapter begins with the alphabet A-Z so there are 26 chapters in all) is absolutely exquisite in both editions I own (i wore the first one out!) Let me tell you, the movie only covers about the first 3 chapters of the book and the second movie only covers about 2 more! so you've got another 19 chapters to be surprised by! Buy this book, you'll love it forever and ever.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
abby terry
When I got my copy of the "Neverending Story" in last week, I dove for it right away. I had been dying to read it forever. But it's not what was in it that first grabbed my attention. The print is in two different colors: a beautiful maroon for stories relating to the Human world, and a vivid emerald for anything relating to Fantasia. Furthermore, each chapter begins with a full-page with a single letter on it. (The first chapter "A", the last chapter "Z," you get the idea). Add that to the beautiful cover and simple, yet detailed illustrations, and you have one of the best put-together books ever written.
Now, on to the actual story. "The NeverEnding Story" tells the story of Bastian Balthaazar Bux, an outcast trying to get over the shock of losing his mother. One morning, while running from the local bullies, he ducks into a bookstore. He finds a book there that literally calls out to him. Even though his conscience tries to dissuede him, he steals the book and has the urge to read it right away! What he finds in the book is an adventure most unlike any of the others he is used to finding in books. Things seem SO real! He can practically SEE each character, SMELL the earth, TASTE the seedcakes, HEAR the wind, and FEEL the cold. As things go along, he knows it is silly, but he somehow feels a part of the NeverEnding story....
Although this book was written in the 1980's, it has definitely stood the test of time. Michael Ende proves himself as one of the top fantasy writers. Like Bastian, you can almost imagine you are there. If you love books like "Chronicles of Narnia," "Harry Potter," and "The Princess Bride," PLEASE do yourself a favor and read this book!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
surabhi purwar
This book is pure magic, and it is a feast for the imagination. In The Neverending Story, Michael Ende has created a magical world in the Neverending Story that is a joyful journey to depart upon. Wonderful fantasy and characters, and also meaning and life lessons.

Bastien is a small picked-on boy with a lifesize imagination, who picks up a book called the NEVERENDING STORY, that takes him on a magical adventure. Written in a book within a book format, Bastien soon becomes part of the Neverending Story. Fantastical characters abound (this is Fantastica after all), Falkor, the luckdragon, Atreyu, the hero Greenskin. They are all special. There are even some scary beings in Fantastica, because Fantastica is the land of the imagination, and all beings are special within the imagination, all are equal because they exist.

Bastien is chosen for a mission to provide the Childlike Empress with a new name. With her the fate of Fantastica rests. Bastien is a human, and humans and Fantasticans have always had a precarious relationship. They need each other, but humans tend to take Fantastica for granted, and deny its existence, making room for lies and delusions in the human world. Fantastica needs and relies upon the human world, and is taken over by the NOTHING if humans stop believing.

Come along with Bastien on his adventures. You will get sucked in, trust me. And maybe you will come away a little bit braver, and a little more loving, and more apt to discover the adventures of everyday life, as a human, and also find the way to FANTASTICA!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
mludd
I loved this movie as a child and it's about time I read/listened to the book!!! It was very...interesting. And weird. I only remember up until Bastian re-names the Childlike Empress from the movie. And that's only half the book! I don't really remember the second movie. There's a lot that happens and it's a wonderful, fantasical adventure in Fantastica! There's good lessons for kids and it's definitely on my list to read to my future kids. Highly recommend! And now off to re-watch the movies! :)
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
dobime
The Neverending Story provides for its main character exactly what it provides for its readers; an escape from reality in order to take a look at their lives. There lives inside the most timid of all human beings a strong and corageous warrior. Every failing student has the right answer. Every bully has a soft spot. Michael Endes fantasy is targeted towards young adult readers, but young and old alike respond to the most incredible story ever told.
Bastian Balthazar Bux, the main character, feels his life is not worth living. His mother is dead, his father is disconnected from reality, his fellow students hate him, he's not happy with his appearance and it seems that his only escape is through literature. Only when he is at his lowest point does fate step in to point him in the right direction. He steals a book called the Neverending Story from a back alley book shop for some unexplained reason. All he knows is that he is compelled and meant to read the book. Hiding in the attic of his school, he reads the story as if he is a character himself... until at last he finally is. His life will never be the same again.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
kirsten ebersohl
I am still amazed at how many movies flashed by when I was a kid, that were books first. 20 years later I find this book, just by mere chance, and buy it. I remember the movie, and loved it.
If you have seen the movie first, the initial shocker is that the entire movie is found within the first 1/4 of the book. I couldn't believe it. Things kept moving along, and as I flipped pages, you could easily tell there was MUCH more to come, yet everything that happened in the movie seemed to wrap up within the first 100 pages or so. And I have to admit, the movie was pretty faithful to the book. I can see why some characters were changed, due to lack of good technology or time, but for the most part, everything is there. The rest of the story is a fun read, and good fantasy. I would recommend the book for those who were raised on the films, and for younger kids. Not too young, there are some pretty creepy moments, but it nevertheless is a book about imagination. It's money well spent. Get it, if you want to see what really happend to Bastian, and Fantastica.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
julie smith
I grew up watching the movie version of the Neverending Story and it quickly became one of my favorite movies of all time, and the theme song to Neverending Story (which I am listening to as I write) is one of my favorite songs of all time. I did not even know the book existed until I came across it at a school book fair. I bought it immediately and read it, and it is now one of my favorite books of all time.

It tells the story with a depth and detail that the movie only began to reveal, not so much in the story itself, but the philosophy as well. I love the entire concept of the story, how the book Bastian takes is essentially a bridge into the boundless world of dreams and imaginations, how the characters can hear him and what he does will determine the fate of Fantasia (Fantastica in the book). The concepts addressed in the movie appear tenfold in the book. At some points the book is surprisingly dark and eerie, but brilliant all the same.

This is book is like no other fantasy I have read. It is a classic of the genre. I only wish I had the hardcover edition with the red and green ink and the color plates. A must-read for anyone who loves the movie or fantasy in general.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
ahmed salah
It was quite an experience reading this book. There were times when the reading of it came easy, other times when it was slow-going. There was an irritating section of the book where I never finished a chapter without falling asleep. The first half of the book was easy and enjoyable to read. That's the part of the book that is just like the 80s movie. Once Bastian entered Fantastica, I became less interested and even annoyed at points. I did not like how disjointed the action was, I didn't like all the loose ends dangling out there with the tired cliché "that's another story for another time", I did not like Bastian being skinny and power-hungry. However, I really loved the last few chapters in which Bastian searches, grows, works, and loves. This short section is very deep and I wish I had more time to think about it. The city of old emperors, the sea of mist, the house of change, the mine of pictures, and the water of life were all wonderful pictures of what journeys we all go through in life. It was good to think about a question like: What sorts of things need to happen to us in order to make us content with life as it is? Perhaps we need to see the emptiness of where our own blind ambition may lead us, perhaps we need to experience a time of loneliness so that we desire relationships, perhaps we need to conform to a crowd for a while so that we desire individuality, perhaps we need to be children again for a time so that we desire self-giving, perhaps we need to work hard for a time and learn the value of work, perhaps we need to mine deeper, perhaps we need pictures in our minds of people we want to love.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
j v stanley
Since I am German I read this book in its original language several years ago. At age 11 I was captured by the story of Bastian realizing that he is able to save Fantasia.
By turning the pages and read the reader becomes more and more a part of the story. One gets sucked into it. Just like Bastian.
I could not stop reading until late at night when I mostly fell asleep over the book. You cannot hear the phone or the doorbell, you do not want to eat. You are in Fantasia.
Now, 8 years later I have read the book for the fifth time and I still feel the magic Michael Ende created when writing the Neverending Story. As long as people read this book it will be neverending because Ende makes us all feel like a part of it. Every single reader is contributing to the story and makes it last for eternity.
My advice: get the hardcover version and if you speak German, get the original "Die unendliche Geschichte", lean back and drift away to Fantasia!
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
melanie guthrie
This edition is beautifully illustrated. The writing is superb.

What put me on the list of being a crazy person whose viewpoint no one will understand is the, to me, muddy illogical moral education of Bastian, the grieving 10- or 12- year-old bullied fat boy, neglected by his grieving father, both characters being stunned by the death of the mother and wife of their little family.

It was not the strong elements of religious mythology, especially Christianity and Buddhism, in the story, or that there is violent death and dangerous magic and sword fights which eventually earned my distaste. What bothered me a lot was how the character Childlike Empress responded to her sickness which was causing the Nothing that was erasing her world and people (view spoiler)

I didn’t think the sentient, feeling, loyal animals in this book actually got much reward for their love or loyalty. The people of Fantastica certainly did not get much honor or love from their sacrifices either, except for their parts as tools for the testing of and the development of a monomaniacal psychopathic personality in Bastian. It was disturbing, actually. The ending left me feeling the only reason Bastian made progress with empathic affection was that he had become sated from fulfilling every base desire he had and unselfish love was the only experience he had yet to explore.

I was very unhappy with these bizarre ‘lessons’ learned. They not only did not make much logical sense, I was reminded for some reason of the story of Job in the Christian Bible. Two gods gamble on Job’s faith, laughingly killing off his beloved wife and children, along with servants, slaves, and animals, in order to test Job. Job hangs on to his faith, which makes one god very happy since he thus won the bet. He gives Job more stuff and people, but does not give a second thought to the deaths of Job’s first set of loved ones. In fact, there is nothing there about what the pain of being senselessly murdered by a god for no good reason other than a hope to win a bet, or the pain of physical death, especially of the children, for such an ignoble and stupid cause. Job’s first family (and servants, slaves and pets) must have undergone extreme emotion from dying so horribly and ridiculously - as a lesson for the bad god, a test for Job and a win for a competitive, possibly bored god? The first wife and kids are not given much opportunity for a meaningful life beyond that of being a useful means to torture Job. Of course, the goal for Bastian’s testing is different than Job’s trial of fire, torture and murder, but if I were a citizen of Fantastica, I wouldn’t be feeling much happiness (or anything if I was unfortunate to have been murdered for somebody else’s redemption) in the attempt to boost Bastian out of his self-absorption.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
ikhsan fanani
Today's new fantasy seems to have gone from books and movies to video games. Now we have so-called fantasy games on the Playstation 2 with women singing with microphones like pop stars. Absolutely annoying rubbish.
Fantasy isn't about anime video games or catching previews on the sci fi channel among comercials or collecting trading cards and buying the foil editions on ebay. Let's go to the core basics.
Fantasy is about imagination. It should be a pleasurable escape. Remeber the Arthurian tales? Hanzel and Gretel? Rapunzel? Jack and the Beanstalk? Think medieval, not anime.
That's why I think this book, THE NEVERENDING STORY, is one of the greatest ever written. Even after watching the "Lord of the Rings" movies, this book is a great escape. You don't need to study European history or Greek mythology to understand this book. You don't need to buy a video game system or follow the anime crowd. All you need is this book, from the store or hopefully the local library carries a copy(beware if it's a large hardcover with a golden snake on it!), and some free time and you'll remember what fantasy used to be and still is today. True, absolute fantasy.
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
amira hanafi
I liked the movie so I read the book. The book is strange and philosophical and much less concrete than the movie. For now I'm going to chalk it up to being some German thing.

The story follows Bastian, an awkward bookworm of about 11. He visits a book store and finds a book called, "The Neverending Story" He knows that he must have the book and so he steals it and locks himself into the attic of his school to hide from the law and read. The story he is reading is printed in red and green, just like the book we are reading. Gradually Bastian notices that characters in the story react to things he does and realizes that the fate of the fictional (or not so fictional) world he is reading about hangs on his actions. This is the first half of the book. It plays with breaking the fourth wall.

In the second half of the world the fourth wall is broken. Bastian is in the world of ideas. He can trade memories for wishes that come true as he wishes them. So this explores identity. The world of Fantastica is like a medieval painting. Gargoyles etc come from here and there. Anywhere you look archetypes are playing out morals and ideas. But when you step back and look at the whole picture you see that there are only these small thoughts and scenes. Anyone of them is more planned out than is the picture as a whole. This didn't work for me in book form. By the end of the book I didn't care what happened to any of the characters.

I think that the approach here is very much a love it, hate it one. I don't even know that you would know if the book is for you from reading the first few chapters. For me monotony set in about a third of the way through. It is very tenuous and has philosophical aspirations. If you saw the movie and liked it, that is no guarantee of liking the book. My recommendation is to read this only if someone who knows you has pointed you toward it.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
yasaman
I hate fantasy and I'm sceptical of gushing overzealous reviews typified by the comments that surround this book. If you are like-minded and have been turned off by the readers' comments found herein, take my advice. I urge you to get hold of a copy of Michael Ende's 'The Neverending Story'. Whilst being a fantasy, it's not some third rate sci-fi rag or 'comic fantasy' in the mould of that cretin Terry Pratchet and it pre-dates cyber-punk dross too. Ende's masterpiece is a joy and worth it's weight in gold. He spins a story that is so farfetched and that lesser authors would never be able to carry off. The Neverending Story however is nothing if not absorbing. Hang up your disbelief and your hang-ups - this is the perfect tonic for cynics like you and me. Give it as a gift and get yourself a copy of his much briefer kid's book 'Momo' also. Whilst you're out buying get yourself some Steinbeck, Kesey, Eco, Charriere and Burgess too.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
mpalo
Bastian,a young boy, is being picked on his way to school. To get away from his peers, he runs into a book store and while inside he finds the book The NeverEnding Story on the check-out counter. Something draws him to the book so much that he steals the book from the book store. Instead of going to class that morning Bastian sneaks up into the attic of his school so that he can begin to read the mysterious book,which he was drawn to. Basitan completes all of the adventures together with the main character of the book. In the story Artryu and Bastian's mission is to find a way to stop the plague called the nothing from taking over Fantasia. This is one of the best books I have ever read. This story was a childhood classic when I was very young. This story has magic, adventure, and monsters. If you have seen any of the NeverEnding story movies you have to read the book. This book is for anyone who loves fantasy novels.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
clarisse
I remember watching the movie when I was really little and I loved it. When I was 12 and the sequel came out, I became intrigued and decided that I wanted to read the book. When I was finally able to obtain a copy, I fell in love with it immediately. I am 19 now and an English major in college. This book is one that I have never forgotten and it has inspired me to become a writer. Without a doubt this is, and always will be, the best fantasy book that I've ever read. The story is wonderful and thought-provoking for its views of the importance of imagination, bravery, honesty, ect. Also, the descriptions in it are so realistic that I could actually see the characters in my head as I read it. This book is not just a children's book; rather, it is a book that adults can love and learn from as well. I firmly believe that anyone who wants to write fantasy should read this book. It is a wonderful, and beautiful example of the genre.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
cylia
I was obsessed with the movie when it was first shown on screen. Soon after, my dad gave me the book. It was the old Penguin paperback version without the red and green print. From the time I was in third grade to forth I must have read it over fourty times. I am 22 years old now. How many more times have I read it since? I love books. I've read tons of them. None of them are remotely as enveloping as the NeverEnding Story. As I grew older the story grew with me. It's been a slightly different story each time, I've noticed. It will never cease to fascinate me. Putting it softly, it has been an odessey of epic proportions for me. I don't know what it would be like for you but if you enjoy reading at all, it goes without saying what book I'd recommend. The 1st movie is a great children's movie. (The 2nd and 3rd, however, are best left unwatched.) The NeverEnding Story is for anyone who can read, regardless of age.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
lesa heschke
A student of mine gave me this for Christmas, as I'd never read it, and I totally enjoyed it. I read it all in one day while waiting in airports and flying across country, and it was compelling all the way through--a very wide-ranging and imaginative epic adventure. It's really a meta-novel: a children's book about a book within a book, one where the lines between "reality" and "fantasy" get completely blurred as the protagonist, a boy named Bastian, discovers that he has become a character in the book he's reading. The story has a realm of mythical creatures from centaurs and giants to tinies and luckdragons, all of whom coexist in the realm of Fantastica. Although in translation (by Ralph Manheim), the descriptions are beautiful, and the adventure is compelling throughout. The first half portrays a hero, Atreyu (a ten-year old boy), trying to find the solution to the illness of the Childlike Empress (a title that I found mysteriously evocative throughout) which is corresponding to the growing destruction of Fantastica--evils that are apparently external to the characters themselves. But the second half, which is still as adventurous, takes us into the consequences of the flaws and poor choices of Bastian himself, a ten-year old boy with both selfless and selfish impulses. Atreyu's quest is thus to save his home and the Childlike Empress from destruction, while Bastian's quest is one more of loss, choices, and self-discovery. Each step in Bastian's path, whether progressive or regressive, has tremendous effects on Fantastica, and, paradoxically, he has to forget as much as he learns in order to find himself.

Each of the 26 chapters begins with the letters of the alphabet in order, and the illustrations for the first page of each chapter are wonderful. The paperback version alternates between the "real world" and Fantastica with the use of different typefaces; I hope some day to get a hardbound edition that uses two colors just like the book that Bastian is reading.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
carol lynn grellas
This is a book you have to read! The story is about a boy named Bastian Balthazar Bux who runs away and steals a book titled "The Neverending Story". He reads about a land, another world, named Fantastica and it is in desperate need for a human to come from earth. A thing, a 'nothing' is spreading through Fantastica and the people of Fantastica beginning to suck into it. For once you go in, you become lies or evil beings in earth and tell humans that there is no such thing as Fantastica. There is also another problem in the land, the Childlike Empress is sick and if she dies, all of Fantastica will die. A boy is sent to find out how to cure her. The boy's name is Atreyu. The book goes on to Atreyu's journey to the Swamp of Sadness, the Desert, an horrible encounter with a huge and poisonous spider, meeting a fire-dragon named Falcor and becoming friends with it, going to Uyulaya, a scary brush with death in Spook City while trying to find the border of Fantastica, and finally, going back to the Childlike Empress. The cure is for a human child to come to Fantastica to giver the Empress a new name. Bastian goes into the book and makes lots of trouble for himself,Atreyu,and other characters in the book.
This author has lots of imagination. I like Atreyu's journey to find out what the cure for the Empress the best. It's was lots of fun to read the "Neverending Story". All people would love this action,suspense, and most of all, the imagination of the characters and the places.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
judsen
Like everyone else, my remembrances of childhood contain hazy memories of Atreyu doing battle with Gmork, and a young Barrett Oliver as Bastian yelling "I will do what I dream!" So, in a mood to reaffirm my youthful fantasies, I picked up a copy of Michael Ende's 1979 novel upon which the movie was loosely based, "The Neverending Story". I was not surprised that the largely dark tone of the movie was, of course, much darker, deeper and much more sustained in the novel. But I am not here to compare the book to the movie, both of which are classics in their own right. Like the best of what is considered children's literature, "The Neverending Story" has an appeal and a depth that literally begs for continued readings as one grows older. A novel about growth, maturity, the power (fraught as it is) of imagination, and the necessity of books to provide us with different perspectives on our world, "The Neverending Story" is a challenging children's novel which respects its readers enough to not treat them like children.
"The Neverending Story" begins as Bastian Balthazar Bux, a fat little ten year old, picked on by his classmates and teachers, and ignored by his father, runs from the torments of his classmates one rainy November morning before school. Ducking into Mr. Coreander's vintage book store, Bastian suddenly finds himself in a state of mind that portends that he has come here for a reason. Following a brusque chat with Mr. Coreander, Bastian is drawn to a book the old man was perusing, titled "The Neverending Story," bearing a logo of two snakes in an ourobouros pattern. Grabbing the book and ditching school, Bastian hides in the school's attic and begins to read a book that will change his (and our) life. The book's world, Fantastica is in grave danger - a blinding force called The Nothing is slowly eating away at Fantastica - ambassadors of all Fantastican nationalities are sent to the heart of Fantastica, The Ivory Tower, to appeal to the Childlike Empress, the impartial ruler of Fantastica, only to find that she is dying. By the time the green-skinned youth, Atreyu, is sent to discover the cause of the Childlike Empress's illness, Bastian, (and the reader) are hooked.
"The Neverending Story" is a novel that deals heavily with epistemological self-discovery - Atreyu's Great Quest, and Bastian's, test the limits of physical and mental endurance. Atreyu and Bastian represent two approaches to self-knowledge - Atreyu, the Socratic questioner, and Bastian, the experimental deductive reasoner. Both have their pitfalls, but the novel does not fault these two boys for the risks they take or the execution of their schemes. Success and blame are best judged by the self in retrospect, the novel suggests, and it is only through experience (as opposed to book learning only) that we understand who we are and our places in the world and in relation to others.
Ende doesn't spend much time developing minor characters - most of the strange beings we encounter throughout "The Neverending Story" are rarely present for more than a chapter or two, but the ones who do stick around are impressive, though sometimes simultaneously distant and welcoming presences. Morla the Aged One, the gnome Engywook, and the Three Deep Thinkers illustrate the ruts we can get ourselves into when we are apathetic, or obssessive, but detached. Gmork and Xayide are our tormentors, the nay-sayers, the opportunists, the manipulators. Falkor the luckdragon, Grograman the Many-Coloured Death, the Childlike Empress, Yor, and Dame Eyola are the signposts of encouragement that we meet, especially in our childhood, but also thorughout our lives, guides who provide love, knowledge, and life experience. In short, though most of the minor characters flit in and out of the novel like symbols in dreams, each serves a purpose in the lives of Atreyu, Bastian, and the reader.
As I said earlier, this is a novel which respects the intelligence of its readers - there are long stretches of not only joyous fantasy, but also intense political and psychological trauma. Written in the late 70's in Germany, we should really pay attention to Ende's focus on "the borders of Fantastica" - the focus thoughout the novel on crossing borders, climbing walls, and passing gates all serve as a powerful comment on a split Communist/Democratic Germany represented by the Berlin Wall, and a dream for post-national fluidity. "The Neverending Story" is not just a novel, but a challenge - for us to mitigate the power of power, to reevaluate our relationships to people and to literature, to be individuals, and not the "weak-minded" followers that Gmork lusts after. This is really a terrific book, and one that no doubt will continue to enthrall and delight.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
williams
What I find most pitiful and grieveous about all the so-called fans of this remarkable story is the complete lack of ability to name the white luck dragon. It is most pretentious to rant and rave and critique this work when the 'fans' have absolutely no idea about the characters in this book about their bloody names!!!!! Picture this if you will: A person, a girl we'll say, has suddenly been overwhelmedwith an insatiable desire to find out the white luck dragon's name. It is late at night but she is resolute, she must know. This girl turns to the web and after numerous attempts and dead ends she stumbles across this site. What joy, what bliss, salvation through the aquisition of knowledge is here. It is not to be. All she reads is '... blah, blah, blah, the white luck dragon..." She is destined never to know. You people who say you love this book are a disgrace. It is through your pathetic half-attempts to capture this story that the essence of the story is lost. WHAT IS THE BLOODY DRAGONS'S NAME?
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
nick wiens
The Neverending Story is a book that anyone can enjoy, regardless of age and gender. It was better than I expected it to be and it's packed full of important themes. How Michael Ende came up with a great story like this truly boggles the mind. I've seen the movie and liked it, but the book explained what the real meaning of its' title. The only gripe that I had with it were some of the character descriptions, some of them seemed rather corny, either the product of Ende's intent or Manheim's translations. Other than that, I consider this novel a first rate fantasy. Anyone, I think, who reads it, will definetly think about Ende's thoughts that he expressed in his book. It is clear that Michael wrote an entertaining fantasy, but he also wanted the reader to think. The Neverending Story is about Bastion, a depressed boy who dosen't seem to like himself too much. When he discoveres that the land of imaginations' existence depends on his actions, he is afraid and wonders what the Childlike Empress could want out of a anti-hero such as himself. When he does save Fantasia, he becomes not only it's savior, but also a supreme being. But his new-found powers make him very vunerable to HIMSELF? Read the book to see what I mean. The Neverending Story is a book that its' readers won't forget for a long time, if ever.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
andrea milne
This book is rivoting! The first time I read it, I was about 10 years old:)and never thought there could be a book so spellbindingly magical as this one. I couldn't put the book down and I read through the night even though my mom would've killed me if she found out! It's been over 10 years since I first read this book and I still get goosebumps everytime I hold this treasure. Bastian takes you to a place filled with passion, fear, and love. He takes you on a magical carpet ride through the Swamps of Sadness, the Ivory Tower, and the Southern Oracle, where one can discover his or her true identity. I learned that if we lie to ourselves about what the Truth holds in store for us, then mystical Fantasia and our imagination will suffer the consequences. You wouldn't want that to happen, would you? So, if you're in for a treat--read The Neverending Story, and fulfill your wildest fantasies
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
sandra hollingsworth
this is one of the most beautiful books i have ever read. i come back to it because i feel that there is a very important message in it.

in buddhism there is a profound experience called anatta, also known as no self or the unborn. this experience where you no longer have an 'I' is an experience of pristine emptiness. a bit like the emptiness of pure water... you can see and feel it within you... well my emptiness was attacked by this grey meaningless 'nothingness' and i found that i had to create a new 'i' for myself. otherwise, i think i would have been lost totally in limbo.

since this experience, i have come even more to see this story as true and a real magical interface with our aspect of reality. nothingness is real and it is attacking our world. just look at the grey concrete tower blocks, the grey streets in some of our cities. the unemotional coldness and indifference so many people feel nowadays.

this man did not write this story, it birthed itself. michael ende merely held the pen and bastian bulthazzar bux leaped through a magical doorway into our world.

so watch out for the nothingness, the grey wolves are on the prowl...

love snow-flake xxx
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
ryan coffman
Michael Ende has the rare talent of being able to capture the innocence and beauty of a child's world within the pages of a book and make it so colorful and magical that it seems as though instead your staring at a painting or work of art.

The greatest aspect of the Neverending Story is being able to identify with the characters and share the adventures of their world as though you're right alongside them. From the time when Bastian first opened the book to when he and Atreyu are sitting outside the Silver Sage's palace and gazing at the sky, and then suddenly when Bastian begins to change, there is such emotion in the characters that makes us feel as though they are real, living people and that they might jump from the pages any moment.

This book is true, pure fantasy; a thrilling adventure and a rewarding read, for people of all ages.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
omid
When I was eight years old I remember watching the movie based on this book, The Neverending Story, over and over again, being enchanted by Bastians journey through a magical book. Five years later, after reading the book, I never wanted to see the movie again. The movie was like a disgraceful Tim Allen christmas movie compared to the original book.
When I was thirteen, I hated reading. I rarely did my reading response journals for school, and I would probably read about three books a year, not reaching my 25 book goal for school. After I got suspended for throwing a pencil at someone, I was put into a quiet room with nothing to do for five days. To make time fly, I started reading during the suspention.
I first read old yeller, then an abriged version of Tom Sawyer. I caught an interest in reading at that time, but It certainly wouldnt have lasted if I havent come across The Neverending Story during my suspention. I remember reading it both in school, and at home. No matter where I read the book, I was spellbound. It was Impossible to put the book down.
Reading this book was like walking through peoples dreams because it was so enchanting. Each word would paint a dreamlike picture and keep me reading. When I was done reading this book, I knew for a fact, that my life was changed forever. Simply because I read this book, I now read every single day, and I dream of becoming a published author (And a songwriter as well).
I have read many fantasy books, and many that you may know. Yet I know for a fact that none of them are as half as good as this book. This is a book for everyone, and for all ages. In fact I beleive adults may need this spellbinding fantasy as much as teenagers do. I guarantee that if you read this book, your life will be changed like mine was.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
step
I got this book for my daughter for her seventh birthday, because I had seen the movie many times as a child and wanted to share it with her. I thought the book would cover the same ground as the movie, but there was so much more to the book. The movie covers less than half of the content of the book. It was a magical experience for both of us to read this book aloud to my daughter. Many times we laughed or cried together as the story surprised and touched us. I highly recommend that every parent read this to their children. I wish that my parents had known about it when I was a child.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
michael durham
This book is chock full of imagination! It starts out with a timid boy named Bastian stealing a book from a bookstore and hiding away in the school attic to read it- "The Neverending Story". He is swept away into an enchanting world called Fantastica (Yes, it was Fantasia in the movie) following Atreyu to try save Fantastica from The Nothing. Bastian soon finds out this mysterious book includes him in the story! If you are familiar with the movie, this book starts out like it, but has so much more detail included, and the story goes on much longer where the movie ended. In the book, Bastian does not go back home to make wishes in his own world, instead he stays in Fantastica and makes wishes there. I could not get over how original each little idea the author had to include in the story. This book is a good fantasy for children and adults alike.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
richa
Having grown up watching the film version about twenty times and still listening to Limahl's The Neverending Story song about once a month, I was pleasantly surprised to discover there was a book behind the movie(s). If you saw the second movie, my apologies. The less said about that film the better. This book covers the story of the two movies, although having now read the book, it appears the first movie was more faithful to the book than the second.

Bastian is an introvert. An introvert who enjoys books and doesn't much like interacting with the people around him. One day he steps into a bookshop and discovers a book called - take a random guess. Yes, The Neverending Story. Beginning to read it he discovers that the land of Fantastica (Aside: Fantasia really does roll off the tongue better) is dying and that the Childlike Empress is mysteriously ill. Now Atreyu, the protagonist of our book, is sent on a quest to discover how to cure the Empress.

Those who know the film will know that the quest itself is the ultimate "the journey is more important than the destination". To say more defeats the surprise of this book for those who haven't read it. And if you really are only familiar with the first movie (lucky you) then you're in for a great surprise because there is a whole lot more to the story after the critical moment. The book is far richer than the movie. The way that the Bastian chapters were in purple and the Fantastica chapters were in green was a nice touch too.

There was some heavy C.S. Lewis influence on parts of the book, especially towards the end. This draws away from some of the originality of the book because you feel as if you've read this book. But it is still a fun book to read that puts a smile on the face and helps keep the spirit of magic alive.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
mike rumley wells
The Neverending Story is truly an outstanding book. First published I believe in German, it has been translated into English quite adeptly, although there are a few cases of awkward wording resulting from this. Other than that, this is a nearly perfect book. Bear in mind one thing while you're reading though -- while it is great, it is also a children's book, so don't go looking for really challenging vocabulary and adult themes.
I picked up this book in Zany Brainy maybe seven years ago, and I have read it quite a few times since then. I find something new in it every time, and it never gets old. It stays just as beautiful and perfect each time.
If you've seen the first two movies, they are both based on this books, the second only nominally, but even the first hardly does the book justice. This, despite being a children's book, has themes that apply all throughout life, and its simplicity is wonderfully refreshing after so many other books which try to impress you with their incredibly flashy wording and daunting size. The pictures at the beginning of each chapter are skillfully sketched, and this is just overall an amazing work of art.
No matter what your age, buy this book. Buy it for yourself. Buy it for your kids and read it to them. You won't be dissapointed.
Another fascinating book is Ende's Momo, which unfortunately only seems available in spanish at the moment, but keep your eyes out for it.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
ole nadreas
"The Neverending Story" takes you to a world of fantasy.
The story starts out with a boy named Bastian stealing a book from a bookstore and hiding away in the school attic to read it.
He is swept away into an enchanting world called Fantastica following Atreyu to try save Fantastica from The Nothing.
This book pulls you into a beautiful imaginary world, capturing childhood's magic in a special way.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
dwita ariyanti
This is one of my top five books of all time, and I've read a lot.... The story of Basitan is a dark farie tale, at once enticing us to follow our dreams and reminding us that we cannot let those dreams control us. Bastian is all of us at one time or another - passed over, kicked around and so enamoured of his fantasy world that he nearly loses the real one. I saw myself in there, as have many other people.
As others have said, the movies cannot compare to the book. I loved the first movie, and still do. I give some credit to the second for at least trying to make the attempt to follow the book. I refuse to acknowledge the existence of the third.
This is one that I recommend heartily and without reservation. And when you are done, give it to someone else.
It's that kind of book....
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
dominic
I remember as a kid, going to the movies with my family to see this movie. We were all completely enraptured with the movie because we all cheered, laughed and cried along with the characters. When I finally got the book a few years later, it was so much richer and detailed and it had many more adventures that Atreyu/Bastian went on. The movie is good, but the book is MUCH better! It has characters and adventures that would have filled at least 5 movies worth of material.
The concept that the story inside a book is real and changes based on who is reading it, is intriguing and has you really believing that it could happen to you. I am so glad the movie introduced me to this book because it is a delight to read again and again. I highly recommend the illustrated, hardcover edition as it is the closest to what Mr. Ende had in mind when he wrote it.
If you were a fan of the movie like me or want to see the story in action, pick up the DVD or VHS version. Even though I don't really recommend the sequel to the original movie since I feel it is the same movie rehashed and the book tells the story so much better than any movie. Still, for completeness, you may want to see the second movie. Finally, there is the third movie (which I haven't even seen since I have only heard bad things about it) although it might be best to pretend that it was never made. ;)
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
jenn reinbold
A lot of people claim to have been put off by this book because of its unwillingness to stick to the film that came out in the mid-eighties. However, if you actually read the book, it becomes clear that Bastian's adventure is very similar, but far more complex than the film was able to capture. The second film that they made actually delved quite a bit closer to the story, carrying on Bastian's adventure, but without seperating the two. The overall moral standing out that when one has the power to do exactly as he wishes, those wishes will overpower him, until all he knows about himself is his own greed and lust for power.

It is a very powerful and compelling story, fun to read with children and containing what some might consider the lost values of yesteryear.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
yaara
First off I am 19 years old, so I'm no kid, and this book is amazing in every way. As a book reader of many sorts, fantasy has been my main genre focus for years, and this book, which I stumbled upon, is a true gem that I wish more people knew about. Although, if it was a popular book then it wouldn't be the gem it is. Anyway, any reader of fantasy that wants a good, and may I add, a VERY original piece of work, should give this book a try.

The book itself is revolved around a young boy named Bastian, who is one of those alienated, overweight, bulled children who never fits in with anybody and feels very excluded. As not to give away any spoilers, I'll just say that he stumbles upon a book, and finds himself as part of the story itself. This book has monsters unlike anything you've seen, has an amazing storyline, and above all the characters are all unique and none are alike, making this story unforgettable and re-readable. Give this a try, you will not regret it!

Michael Ende, who I never heard of before this book, and whom I have only read The Neverending Story, although I am not sure if he has written anything else, is a very creative and intriguing author. Every chapter is graced with a beautiful illustration that involved something in the chapter itself, along with a huge letter, which is also the first letter in the first sentence. In other words, him along with this book, are very creative and original.

Also, I did see the first film, but if you read this book, like me, you may never want to see the film again. I did see the film after I read the book, and I hated it. So be warned, fans of the film reading this, do not expect it to be the same. Although, the book is much, much better, and when compared to the film, the film looks like a piece of work directed by a child who doesn't know the first thing about book-based movies. The book is better, no question or argument there.

All in all, this book is a masterpiece that I think every fan of truly great fantasy epics should read. It is my favorite fantasy novel, and book in general, and nothing quite surpasses it. Of course something like The Lord Of The Rings, or The Chronicles Of Narnia are the two greatest fantasy series of all time, The Neverending Story is better as a single book all it's own, and its so original that it can't be compared to any other book. Read this book, you will fall in love with it!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
wesley allen
I first read the The Neverending Story a couple of years agowhen I was about 12 and I loved it from the very start! It is a powerful and captivating story and I personally can't understand people who don't like it! But please don't bother watching the movies though! They are not worth your time, especially when you know the book! I was very surprised when I came to the US (I am German) and found that most of the people here either haven't read it or even don't even know about it! This is pretty sad and I am trying to change that at least a little bit by recommending it to everybody and by givng at as a present to my friends! If you haven't read it so far, do it NOW! To give a "summary" of it would be a crime, you really have to read it, there is no way around it!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
lacilea24
This book is often overlooked owing to the 1984 film, but you should try to read this whether or not you have seen it. It has everything you could ask for in and fantasy story and I only hope the author got the recognition he so deserves. However, I expect he got a earned a lot of money from the film - which was and is still great! If you like this or want to consider other classics then try The Lord of the Rings, (a great movie now), The Hobbit (soon to be a great film - I hope!) or Into The Trees whihc they should make into a film!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
ehsanul kabir mahin
The Neverending Story is a really good fantasy/classic that is great even for kids. It holds a message, too, about how reading, stories, and most of all dreaming and not giving up is important. It starts out with a little boy, Bastian, who is overweight, constantly bullied, and a lover of all stories. When he finds a mysterious old book, he knows he has to read it. And so, behind the locked door of the school attic, he enters the world of Fantasia. After realizing that only he can save the magical realm, he really does enter the book and becomes a character! Somehow he must overcome fear, greed, and find the meaning of family to survive! This is a really good book, I have read it many times. It is great for all ages.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
rmcd496
I checked this book out in the library. I read this book because I saw the film, and decided to know the real story. I was surprised by the amazing length! I have read many books but not this many with the length. I read this book from the morning till the night and in my bed cover! I was amazed at the plot, the most amazing and complex of all I've read. I read each paragraph many many times to get this book. When I finished this book, I didn't know if I would cry out of joy, laugh out of whatever it is. Whenever I read this book I thought I was in it, I forgot where I was and what time is was. I hated it when I had to leave this book. I guess this book is magical like the book inside the pages. It never ends. I wonder neverendingly.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
yves hanoulle
After I saw the movie,I decided to read this book.
I found more "Movie Efect" through out the pages. The magical Oring,the childlike Princess,the colorful lion in the desert,the neverending story book that write itself for all the time,the white luck dragon .... You will love it and read it again and again after you enter mindly in to the land of Fantasia,but you will never get lost in there,because you have so many lovely friends from the story.And after you finish it,you shall realize that there's always an begining after the end.
There's no really bad guys in the story,but the only thing to destroy the dreamland is the lose of our imagination.So keep your mind going on working and get the access to Fantasia.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
elizabeth koch
"The book of books!" This quote from The Neverending Story says it all, as I've never come across another book like it! Its engrossing plot (told using two different colors of ink in hardcover editions!) follows the story of poor unwanted Bastian Balthazar Bux (printed in red) who is "found" by a copper-colored, silk-bound book, titled The Neverending Story, which he begins to read while locked up in his school's attic. As Bastian reads the story of the heroic Atreyu (printed in green) and a Great Quest to save his dying world of Fantastica and its Childlike Empress, he has no idea that he is also a character in a book! (It makes you wonder, huh?) The Neverending Story is filled with unbelievably imaginative characters such as Grograman the Fire Lion, the Old Man of Wandering Mountain, Querquobad the Silver Sage, and Ygramul, "the horror of horrors!" to name just a handful! And not only are the characters and plot creative, but the book itself is as well! It is printed entirely in colored ink as I have mentioned, plus it has 26 chapters - each one beginning with a letter of the alphabet! Each chapter begins with a magnificent illustration (also in only red and green ink in the hardcover edition) around the first letter! How did he think of that?! But perhaps the best thing about The Neverending Story is what you get out of it. You cannot read it without looking at the nature of wishes, imagination, and love differently from that point forward, no matter what your age is. The Neverending Story is, as you shall see, your story as well. And that of course (to quote the book again,) "shall be told another time!"
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
debra
Once again, I remember reading this book when I was a child. I had always been a bookworm and no problems diving into the imaginary world. This book will bring you even further. The story is one that everyone can relate to - young and old. The translation from German seems to me very good. I unfortunately do not remember every exact wording in German. The message of the book is very clear once you start reading - and even though I was hesitant, I think the movie was very well done to capture this.
There are not many books that one can read every now and then and still feel a renewed bond with the story. This one will keep you wondering what happened to you when you grew up.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
sandra novack
Bastian is the dreamer drawn into the enchanted world of Fantastica which is built on the dreams of humans. The evil is simply known as the "Nothing" a symbolic metaphor of the emptiness that eats away everything.Replete with human emotions and sensitivity the story is fascinating and immensely original. Atreyu the warrior from the plains,Falkor his luck dragon, Ortex,the child-like empress, the evil ygremal and gmork every character weaves a story of astounding complexity but at the same time retains an almost child -like innocence. The places are a visual treat . The howling Forest,swamps of sadness,Desert of Shattered Hopes,the ivory tower, the southern oracle..... The Never ending story is a powerful book which will leave you no better than a child with a smile on your face and a twinkle in your eye
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
brad hart
Well, I am busy reading this wonderful book for, is it the 30th time? It actually was the first English novel that I read that time as a 12 year old. I remember it took me 21 days to get through it that time(English is my 2nd language) I was intrigued by the bi-colored printing of the text(I think that was the reason I took it out of the library) and it was wonderful!!!!!! Unfortunately the hardcover version at our local library was put on the blacklist and now I have to read the paperback in which the text is black, but the red parts of the hardcover was italicized - EECK - it certainly takes away the sheer magic of the story!!! I recommend it for young and old!!!!!!!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
bridie
My kids loved the movie, and now the book I gave the grandkids.. It will sound funny but the reason I bought the book was to see what the name of the princess was at the end of the movie, you cannot understand it.. I even bought the movie first so I could play it over and over for the kids, and no one could understand the name. FINALLY, I now know the name after 20+ years.!!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
harmony
This is one of my favorite stories and I was so excited to see that the store had this novel at such a low price. The book arrived in an excellent and exquisite condition as if it came directly from printing. I highly recommend getting!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
susan shepard
This book is a wonderful, amazing, and truly inspiring one to me. I read widely among the fiction genres, and of all the stories I have ever read, I loved this one enough to name my first-born son and only child after Bastian, the book-loving protagonist. This book is particularly rich, inspiring two movies with only the first HALF of its content. I firmly believe that anyone, everyone, should read this book, along with many other childhood favorites I have loved for years, "the secret garden", "the once and future king", "peter pan", "the hobbit"... well. it's beautiful. the language is educated and sophisticated, the imagery is fantastic, and the concepts are such as could be pondered by most adults and yield a gain in wisdom.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
milad
An imaginitive tale of a young boy who enters the world of the Neverending Story and becomes everything he wants to be and nothing that he ever was. One of my favourite books that should be named a classic. It is not merely fantasy, it is a rather moralistic book that helps us to take a look at ourselves and where we are going in our own Neverending Story. It is wonderful that it is still in print and still beloved by people everywhere. If you have seen only the movie, you have seen nothing, it only covers some of the beginning of the book. It is very hard to put down and one of the best books ever written. Read it to-day!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
tony ellis
The book is not one of the best children's books I've ever read. It's one of the best fantasy books I've ever read. The book was designed for adults, but children would find it enjoyable. Every chapter ends with, "But that is another story." There were so many spin-offs of histories and stories which could have happened, which could have been pursued. Thankfully, they did not. We, the readers, get to complete the stories. This approach made one feel like this story *was* real, and continuing on. This feeling was furthered by the merging of reality and literature which is central to the storyline, reminding the reader that they are actually reading and watching, just as the main character is. And as the main character is drawn into the fantasy, so, maybe, we can be too.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
lauralei dorian
I really like the form of metafiction. Metafiction is when the author intentionally makes it known that their world is fake to get the reader to compare and contrast reality from fiction. The never ending story is you reading the book about a boy reading the book about a world that is dying because people have forgotten about their dreams and imagination. Another good example of metafiction would be the princess bride, where the reader reads the book about a grandfather reading the book to his sick grandson. I guess I'm just a deep person but I love novels like these.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
milo
Andrew Tully

Hour 1

March 21, 2005

Book Review

Neverending? Unfortunately not.

Not a very likely first statement for a standard book of fantasy. But, then again The Neverending Story, ironically, written by Michael Ende, isn't a standard tale. This story is written in third person, something not unusual for a fantasy story, the single twist is this, the reader knows the "All Knowing Being" is a boy of twelve who is reading along with you. Both the narrator and the boy whose story he's reading are very believable, and yet maintain a set of demigod-ish attributes. The plot is basic; an unlikely hero needs to save the princess and the world, named Fantastica, while undergoing innumerable and unimaginable trials, and the aid of mythical characters such as nymphs, dwarves, rock giants, luckdragons, and the occasional will-o-the-wisp. Just as the story seems to end, the young boy reading with you is sucked into the book! Whoa...I didn't see that coming.

I won't ruin any other twists in the story, but that doesn't mean that by any stretch of the imagination this book is boring. In fact, I would say The Neverending Story is one of the best books I have ever read, and from a guy who's read everything from Shakespeare to Douglas Adams, I have a pretty well versed portfolio of things to compare with. The reasons this book was so appealing are simple. The language was simple, and yet wound together in a fashion that makes the description fluent and eloquent, and so events are intertwined by detail that seems fine-tuned. Transitions from the real world to the world of Fantastica are clean, yet they are made clear by the use of Italics for the real world script and regular text for the interactions in Fantastica.

But, can one have a well-versed fiction book with just description and fancy language? No, there must be a moral. Ende's moral is simple: be true to yourself. Both main characters in The Neverending Story experience trials that test their innermost beliefs about themselves. If either boy should fail to recognize the importance of their own self-confidence, that consequences will be even worse than death. A very appropriate theme written by someone raised in one of the most highly political time the world has ever seen. Michael Ende was born in Germany in 1929. He was raised by his parents, and when he was old enough, he entered into the Waldorf School. He attended for two years, but was forced to quit when the German Army drafted him. After World War 2, Ende held various jobs in the arts until in 1960; he published his first book, Jim Button and Luke the Engine Driver.

Well, I personally enjoyed this book, and most others who read it agreed. Reading Matters, a UK based book reviewing site says: "If you enjoy fantasy and roaming round totally new worlds populated by the outlandish and bizarre, then I'm sure you will enjoy this book!" I would recommend this book for all people who love fantasy. It is filled with all the best aspects of the genre, and it holds a few surprises that make it worth the read.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
delroy
To all of us who grow up with this movie during the 80's, the book is a more than pleasent discovery.Bastian is in for fantastic experiences, being immersed in the world of fantasia.He has all of his wishes granted, turning Fantasia into a big properous land, however, he becomes arrogant and he forgets who he REALLY is.His new quest is rediscover himself and accept himself for who he is.Otherwise he is doomed to a grim destiny. this novel is filled with beautiful, rich, complex characters that have the ability to fascinate us still.Ende has achieved a flawless work of art with this book.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
margaret pitcher
I've liked this little movie since I first saw it on TV several years ago, several years after it was in the theaters. I kept catching bits & pieces of the movie so I finally bought it and have enjoyed it each time I watched.

Recently I helped a friend edit his play and it reminded me of the movie, so we watched it together. It wasn't until then that I realized that it had been based on a book; that's when I decided to order the book and see how well the movie fit with it.

As I read the book, the movie came to life again. But I was surprised to see there was so much book left after what I thought was the end! To my extreme pleasure, there were many more adventures and really strange and wild creatures. Instead of simply having the boy save this "imaginary" world and ride off on the Luckdragon, we saw his transformation. What at first seemed like wonderful limitless powers turned out to be his downfall (or could have been).

Frankly, I think this book should be up there with the Narnia Chronicles in terms of child development, the corruption of power, hope for healing and transformation. I'm 46 years old and this book touched me in ways I never expected a "children's book" to do.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
brielle
Originally classified as a children's book, this is really a deeply spiritual parable written for all of us. Your children will be dazzled by the imaginary creatures and fantasy lands, while you will discover deep spiritual messages and awe-inspiring symbolism that is prevalent in every single chapter.

Travel with Atreyu, Falkor and Bastian as they take on the journey into the heart of man. One of the best parts about this book is that just when you think it couldn't get any moreentertaining or profound, it surprises you by being even more of both.

If you've paid attention throughout the book and learned the lessons it
aims to teaches, then when all is said and done, you too may understand
what exactly is "The Neverending Story."
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
alile
It makes me sad to give this just 3 stars. I absolutely loved the movie when I was little, but this book is just...uninteresting. I don't know if it's because the movie was a cherished childhood memory, or the book just isn't what I expected - but I just wasn't captivated by this book.

The best part about this book is the following quote - which is beautiful:

"If you have never wept bitter tears because a wonderful story has come to an end and you must take your leave of the characters with whom you have shared so many adventures, whom you have loved and admired, for whom you have hoped and feared, and without whose company life seems empty and meaningless.

If such things have not been part of your own experience, you probably won't understand what Bastian did next."
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
carol duff
Some books can touch frozen archetypal currents within us and entice them into flowing again. This is one such book. Ende has adapted the Hero's Journey to fit modern sensibilities, to rekindle enchantment with a world in which imagination, dreams, fantasies and wishes are temporarily saved from invisibility of the real. I found the book to be profound and touching. It is an entrance into Ende's world of magic, mystery, beauty and endless surprise... a world as strange and alluring as it is familiar.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
deb hobaugh
I don't often read books. I think I can say that I've read about as many books as I have fingers. I also can say that this books is so precious to me that I have it in hardcover. On top of that, this is the first review I've ever written.

I'm 29 years old and this by far is and is not a children's book. It's good fantasy for a child's mind, but it is so much more. If you aren't into philosophy, then you will miss so much that this book has to offer. But to each their own.

Being a child of the 80's, I had certainly watched and enjoyed the movie. But the movie totally misses the point of what Michael Ende was trying to convey. And I don't blame Mr. Ende for wanting to have nothing to do with the movie (they snuck his name in in the credits). I hope to see a remake of the movie that actually sticks to the story within my lifetime. Regardless, I have the book.

The message of this book is so powerful. The journey it takes you on is necessary for the end to have its full impact. The way it touches on reality is so phenomenal.

If you want to read about the human journey, this is the book for you. The conclusion brings purpose, not only to the main character, but a reminder to you.

What are we living for? Read and find out.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
nedy ann ginez
This is one of those experiences where you are not just surprised and delighted by the depth of the original story compared to the movie, but floored by the exceptional expanse of quality and majesty within it. I tell people I love the book, and they either didn't realize it was a book, and have no interest in finding out more about it, or they have read it, and we both have a warm and fuzzy feeling remembering our favorite parts of it together.

Please. My (second) copy is getting old. I'd love to read this on my Kindle. Ende and Manheim are no more. Who can I appeal to for a Kindle version? I'd love to carry this along with the rest of my collection there.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
richard khor
"(Bastian) had never been willing to believe that life had to be as gray and dull as people claimed. He heard them saying: `Life is like that,' but he couldn't agree. He never stopped believing in mysteries and miracles." -page 153

The Neverending Story, originally written in German by Michael Ende, speaks to that hope in us. It concerns a sad, chubby little boy named Bastian whose life is perfectly miserable. In an attempt to escape some bullies he finds himself in a musty old rare bookstore. He is irresistibly drawn to a mysterious old storybook, which he steals, and flees to the attic of his school to read The Neverending Story in peace. He reads about a world called Fantastica with incredible characters and a Childlike Empress who is terribly sick. At the same time a terrible thing called the Nothing is destroying Fantastica and a little boy (actually a Greenskin) named Atreyu is sent on a mission by the Childlike Empress to find out the cause of this terrible plight and to save Fantastica before it's too late. Bastian finds himself becoming entwined in the story as the lines between the two worlds become blurred.

This is one of the best books I've read in a while--it's not only a page-turner but seems to have multiple layers of meaning and in many ways feels like an allegory. Ende's imagination is almost godlike in scope (in the same way Tolkien and Lewis were able to create the worlds of Middle Earth and Narnia). I am usually not a fan of fantasy, but I would (and do) recommend this book to anyone (and everyone).
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
espen jensen
For those who love a book that draws you into it and keeps you in awe, I recommend this highly!

I first found the book years after seeing the second movie (which I mistakenly thought was the first at the time) when a friend was rummaging through her stuff. She was no longer interested and gave it to me. After reading through it the first time I was amazed at the treasure I had just received. The book was beyond anything I had ever read. I have since read it three times, cover to cover, and it remains my favorite book.

I own the 1983 original translation of the book with an older hardback cover and very yellowing, but loved, pages.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
lynnea
Okay, Okay I know Harry Potter is all the rage these days. I also read the first Harry Potter book and definitly enjoyed it. However, it is nowhere near the caliber of The Neverending Story. If you are an adult and enjoy children's stories then read this book!
We are introduced to a sad and lonely boy named Bastian who escapes from his reality by reading. While running away from some bullies he happens into a book shop, where he steals a book that isn't very ordinary. From there the lines of reality and fanasty start to merge as Bastian can't help feeling that he is somehow part of the story.
As a reader I also felt pulled into the story and found myself feeling attached to both Bastian and his better half Atreyu. This book does what a book is suppose to do...it makes you feel as though anything is possible.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
haania
I love this book. Ever since I first read it in third grade, I read it at least twice a year, not including summer. The plot, setting, and characters are all amazing; It's absoloutly impossible to put it down! Alas, the movie is not as good, and the second and third movies are horrible, as neither of them have anything to do with what happened in the book. Anyway, if you love fantasy, science fiction, or just like books that you can read anytime and enjoy each time you read it, read this one. It's the best book in the world.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
jennifer s r
The neverending story was the first book i ever owned , it was given to me as a gift from my uncle on my birthday. That was the day i fell in love with books .
One of the most beautiful stories ever written , about a boy and a fairytale land that is in danger because people don't believe in them anymore . Although it was a very big book it was easy to read and it doesn't matter how old you are it's for all ages .
I was one of the lucky ones who read the book first and then saw the movie , which was very good i might say . But the book , the book was magic , i never forgot the story or the characters .
I strongly recommend this book to everyone .
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
trista winnie fraser
This book is so good; you can't put it down. You get into the story. All the places, people and things that are told in this book are a work of art. The Neverending Story is a FIVE STAR, TWO THUMBS UP, AN ELVEVEN ON A SCALE FROM ONE TO TEN, AND a #1 in my book!!!
When you read this book...you feel like you're right there in Fantasia. You fell like you're flying with Atreyu on top of Falcore!
You'll love this book so much that you'll want to read it over and over again. "But that is another story and shall be told at another time."
READ IT!!!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
saul blonval
When I was younger my brother, sister and I would watch this movie all of the time. When I was 17 years old I went on a book reading spree and read all of the classic fantasy books that I so much loved as movies. This was a great movie but it is an amazing book. I suggest reading this book if you have seen the movie or not. If you have not seen the movie please read the book first so you are able to make an informed comparison later on. I highly recommend parents read this to their children especially befors they have a chance to watch the movie.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
luke hutchinson
I have been an avid reader since I was a small child, and I have always loved fantasy stories. When I was 12, I went to see "The Neverending Story II" in the theater, and I was instantly entranced and intrigued. I'd watched the first movie when I was about 8 and images from it never left my mind. When I realized that both were based on a book, I knew I had to read it. And so began my quest to find it. Once I finally did, my hands shook as I took the book home and read it. I couldn't stop. From the very first line until the last, I was hooked. The characters, the images, and the story stayed with me long after the last page was turned. There were even times when the characters were so real to me, I felt as if I could literally see them!

I won't go into a description of the plot since so many have done so already. Suffice it to say that this is truly a bibliophile's dream! And you simply MUST get the hardcover with the red and green text. When the book was originally published in Germany, that's how it was printed, and even to this day, German versions are still printed with the colored text.

Now, at 26 and beginning my career as a children's/young adult librarian, I have made it my mission to purchase the hardcover version of this book for every library I ever work at. (Unless they have it already, of course.) It is an essential and classic work of children's literature that has had a profound effect on my life. It encouraged me to think, to dream, and to wonder, but also to remember that while books are important, one shouldn't forget to live life in the "real" world as well. Good fantasy, like this book, encourages children to stretch their imaginations and grow. And that is a truly wonderful gift.

Whenever anyone asks me about my favorite books, this one is always on the tip of my tongue. I love it dearly and am thrilled that so many share my passion for it as well. Read it and remember: truly great books defy age categories and touch us no matter how old, or young, we are.
★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆
barbraw
I love the story, but the majority of this book is printed in LIGHT GREEN text! Some passages are purple, which is much better, but why on earth would the publisher print a book in a pastel green? Stick with some other edition... avoid the hardcover. This is a birthday gift and I'm embarrassed. I have no time to return it and it looks horrible.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
agatha donkar
Having loved the movie version for years, and finally discovering that it was based on a book, I decided to purchase and read the source material. All I can say is, WOW! As is often the case with movies that come from books, the printed version is infinitely richer, fuller, and more complete. As much as I love the first film, it only deals with half the book, while the second is a shabby take off of portions of the second half. So if, like me, you're in love with the story that never ends, do yourself a favor and get this book.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
starfy
Bastian Balthazar Bux is a fat, lonely boy who seems like a bit of a screwball to the kids in his school. So one rainy day when he was running away from them, he hid in a bookstore. There he found a fabulous book called The Neverending Story. Tempted by the promise that this book would never end (who doesn't want a book that won't stop before you find out just what exactly the author means by "happily ever after"?) Bastian steals the book and runs with it to school. On the way he is mortified by what he's just done. He decides he can never go home again, because he's a criminal. He climbs to the school attic and locks himself in with only his lunch and the Neverending Story to sustain him.

This is a story of adventure, of truth, of friendship, of joy, of hope, of despair, of power, of self-esteem, of humility, of pride, of wisdom, of mistakes, of, of... of everything!

The Neverending Story is the circle of life, is what I believe the author was trying to say. That's the main idea I gleaned from the mountain of allegory in this dazzling, thought-provoking story.

The other major theme is love, which becomes extremely clear only at the end of the book. But all of the aforementioned themes were in the book, one after another, drawing you back for more. This book is not for fun, although its characters and locales are so wierd and beautiful that it often is fun.

The prose is powerful because it is so stark. I'm not saying there wasn't enough description. Rather, there was the perfect amount of description, and no excess. You have to use your imagination to see the described things, but you never have to fill in uncomfortable blanks. One small thing I found confusing was the way the author describes sounds. He seemed almost...well, inept at that. For example, he says that a stone-eating giant with buckteeth "crackled" words out, instead of saying he had a gravelly voice or whatever he could have meant by that. He also describes a dragon's voice sounding like a bronze bell, but that's a bit easier for me to imagine.

The book is extremely long for a children's novel, but every word counts, so careful reading is a must. Nonetheless, I was so absorbed in the story that I finished it in two days!

There are some theories in the book that are absolutely mind-blowing. For example, while Bastian is inside the story, someone mentions to him that perhaps someone else is reading the story that he's in. It sent a chill down my spine, because while he had been reading a book by the selfsame title, he had been blasted into its pages! For a split second those words give you the feeling that the same could happen to you! If you don't believe me, try it. It's freaky.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
taisin
The book that thaught me more about my youth then any psychiatrist could ever have taught me. It's perfect, the characters, the story the setting, everything breathes life. The book, I first read it when I was younger, captured my imagination, and evolved it. Whenever I read this book, I have made it a tradition to read it each year at least once, I feel young again, it makes me long back to the days of my youth.
This book is perfect for children, although not too small, and people who want to feel a fraction of what childhood should have been.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
eblong
I am 8 years old and I LOVE this book! I read it and re-read it all of the time! When you read it, you have no idea what is going to happen next, and that's what makes it exciting! There are many creatures you know, like dragons, but there are also creatures that you wonder about, like rock chewers! The movie of this book is good, but they cannot put in what the book can put in! I think that you could take 7 (or more) movies out of this book. I URGE you to read The Neverending Story!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
huyen
It annoys me to read reviews calling this book another "fairy story" or a "watership down;" it is much more complex, up to par with the greatest modern writers/philosophers of our time, yet written to thrill all ages. For instance, some fantasy books tell great stories just for the fun of it (like The BFG), some are made to teach certain morals (like The Phantom Tollbooth), some are influenced by a religion (like christianity elements in the Chronicals of Narnia or A Wrinkle in Time) or region, but all forms of entertainment offer an "escape" from "reality," which is why I don't like it when critics call this book (or anything else that doesn't drool over the latest in politics and financial gain) "escapist literature." It deals with the elements of what makes us dream and why we wish, in a story that takes its main character (and you with him) out of himself and into himself in an amazing journey to find himself or lose himself forever. Michael Ende, whose father was a surrealist painter, grew up in Germany in the earlier part of the last century. His children's books are a good read (Momo, The Night of Wishes, etc.) though not up to par with NES; his adult books are surreal and could scare the pants off of Nietzche (Mirror in the Mirror); NES has elements of both genres,
a great combination of fantasy, unforgettable characters, horrifying emptiness, ambition, amazing landscapes, battles, youthful innocence, friendship, influences from stories in lands all over the world (sphinx, oracle, ivory tower, monastaries, knights, warriors, gnomes, will-o'the wisps, etc.), plus a great many of his own inventions (Rockchewers, luckdragons, windgiants, a picture mine, Bastian, etc.) brilliantly intertwining what is "real" and what is "imaginary," and a sprinkling of startling questions. I find the green and red print hard to read; I prefer the version that uses standard black ink with italic letters (instead of red ink) to indicate Bastian's side of the "Outer World." What I find most delightful about this book is that it changes every time I read it. I've loved it as a child, loved Atreyu, Falkor and all of the characters. I have reread it many, many times to adulthood. It's the same story, the words haven't changed, but readers do and there's always something new to discover in Fantastica, or Bastian's world, or your own world. If you are (or were) a kid with a passion for fantastic books, then this book is definitly for you. Have a magnificent read.
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
cat miller
Let me start by first saying this: The book is a lot different from the movie. As a matter of fact, the book covers BOTH movies, although it covers the first one almost exactly. In some ways I liked the movies better, and in some ways I liked the book better. If the best of both were to be combined, this book would have been really great. The first 200 pages of this book tells how Atreyu goes on his quest, how Bastian enters Fantastica. That part was really well written and moved quickly. But from page 200 or so to around page 300, the storyline seemed to get a little bit weak. Bastain is just romping around Fantastica without really knowing what he's doing or where he's going. If he wants to go to real world, why doesn't he just wish himself there? But then from page 300 or so to the end, the storyline picks up again--for the most part. The ending explains a lot of things that I've been wondering about earlier, but it doesn't explain everything. At least not in cut-and-dry language. Ende beats around the bush a little bit. What is the Neverending story? I think it's any story you read or something like that, but I'm not sure. Young children will probably love this book. Personally, my favorites are Robert Jordan and Robert E. Howard since I'm not a kid any more--I'm 20. Bastian is a really interesting character. At first you like him, then you hate his guts because he's so goody-two-shoesy, then you REALLY hate him because he becomes quite a brat. One final point, take note that there are 26 chapters and that each chapter starts with the next letter of the alphabet. Overall this was a good book, but mostly for younger people. Older people can still enjoy it, but don't expect bloody battles, hot romance, or anything like that.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
becky janes
Lots of adventure, fun characters, and magical lands intertwined with life lessons. Bastian Balthazar Bux unknowingly embarks on the adventure of a lifetime when he steals the Neverending Story and cuts school to read the book.
A very thought provoking junior fiction fantasy novel which I'm sure would uncover more meaning each time it is read.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
tyson
A wonderful mix of the magical and the mundane, to produce one of the best works of fantasy this century. One read is just not enough! With realistic and believable characters, Ende has crafted a masterful tale that is impossible to put down. Perfect for all ages, and all backgrounds. Regretably, Ende has passed on, and new works of his unique blend of fantasy and reality will never again grace our shelves. Everyone needs to read this, and rediscover the beauty of one's imagination.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
amyara
It's different from other books! The chapters are from A-Z! You've seen the movie, right? If you have, it's like that, but with much more! And better! For those who haven't, it's about a boy who stole a book from a store, ran to the school attic, and locked himself in. Then started to read. The Story in the story we're reading, is about the mission Atreyu must take- to find an earthling child, to give the empress a new name, because the nothing is taking over Fantastica! Pretty complicated, huh? Well, The boy (Bastian Balthazar Bux) gives her a name (not telling!). He gets a grain of sand and endless wishes! (here's something I don't know if I should tell...) The problem is, Bastian has to wish to 'regain' Fantastica, but with each wish, he loses a memory, and he needs a memory to get back home! Oh the horror of it all!!! I read this at camp, I took it everywhere, I couldn't stop reading, I really wanted to know what happened! You will too ;oP
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
mandy whilden
I have an older copy of this book. The type is in red and green, green for Fantasia and red for the "real world." The colorful type is the *only* reason I originally picked this book from my mother's collection when I was in fifth grade. I'm now a freshman in college and to this day it is still one of my favorite stories. I enjoyed the first motion picture, but it paled in comparison to what the book can provoke in the imagination of the reader. I read a review a minute ago that states this book is a good bedtime story. I concur, with one admonition: Four-year-olds don't like it! (I tried reading it to my sister) Maybe for an older child. :-)
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
nils geylen
This is my favorite book. If you liked the movie, you'll love the book. The movie only goes through the first nine chapters of the four hundred and forty five page book. It starts with chapter one (Or A) and goes to chapter twenty six (Or Z). Going through the destruction of Fantastica (pronounced Fantistic-a, not fantasia!) to the end of Bastion's adventures (boy I hope I spelled that right!). A breath taking story about friendship and humility, and how one little fat boy can save an entire world of imagination.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
j reed rich
When I asked one of my German friends about their classical literature, she pointed me to "Die unendliche Geschichte" by Michael Ende. First of all, I would recommend anyone fluent in German to read "The Neverending Story" in its original German version. The story revolves around a young boy, Bastian, who feels himself an outcast of the real world. He steals a book -- surprise, surprise -- called "The Neverending Story." What Bastian discovers is a land created through the power of imagination and fantasy. To save Fantasia from destruction by the Nothing, Bastian must enter the world of his own fantasy. The price of creation, however, is high. For each wish grants Fantasia new life and takes from Bastian his memories of reality. Bastian is reluctant to seek a way back home but must travel through Fantasia in search of the Child Empress. Along the way, Bastian must learn to bridge the gap between reality and Fantasia or risk losing all of his memories forever. Only by bridging this gap is Bastian able to make reality and Fantasia fit for human compassion, dreams, and hope. Humanity is indeed defined by man's ability to perceive with idealism and practicality.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
saaman
While the first movie was one of my treasured childhood memories, I remember the joy at finding the original book when I was in 5th grade. At that time, I came away with beautifully vivid images in my mind of the characters, the scenery, the events, and the sheer fantasy of it all. It immediately jumped to the top of my list of favorite books. As the years went by, however, I reread the book and was astounded at the amount of depth and insight. This book is more than just fantasy - it has a real sense of genuine compassion and empathy that was lost in its translation to film. What is most remarkable about this book is that its power is so subtle, you don't realize it working. You allow yourself to be swept up in Bastien's struggles, and then by the end, when you have finally put it down, you realize you've come away with something - you may not even sure what it is, but it's there.
It was written during the German Expressionist period and fits quite well in the themes of existentialism, connection, and loss - but it never lectures, it never bores, and it never loses its childlike sense of wonder and innocence.
For those looking for a good escapist fantasy tale, this book will steal you away and capture your imagination for a night. For those looking for a story subtley imbued with insight, compassion, and depth, this book will touch you deeply. After all these years, this book is still my favorite, and speaking personally - one of the most profoundly life affecting.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
alysanne
Well i accidentally stumbled across The Neverending Story when i was looking for another of Michael Ende's book, Momo, and ever since i have read it no fewer than six times and each time i was as enthralled as the first time i read it. Why? you may ask. the story is intensely exciting, and the characters are incredibly believable and at the end of the book you wish it wasnt over. Bastian was an incredible hero, and the best part is at the end, when he begins to lose his meemory. i totally reccomend it for readers of all ages
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
lorena
Many, if not all, children know the story of the Neverending Story by the movie. It is a favorite of most, and an ispiration to all. Of course, the second one, it is said, isn't as good as the first. Perhaps that is because the first is the story-line we know, and the second contradicts some of the character traits we know and love.
But for those of us who have read the book, the second movie is just the second half of the book, and, though poorly done, is correct as far as the story-line goes. The problem is, there are slight differences between the book and the movie that are somewhat engraved in the minds of those who have read or seen it.
Those who saw the movie first, picture Bastian as a skinny little boy who reads too much. But those who read the book first know that Bastian really was made fun of for his weight and inability to play games. Such differences are petty and insignificant, but it's as if we're taking little bits away from the author and replacing them with our own misshapen ideas.
The Neverending Story is a classic work of fantasy that every parent should read to their child as early as possible. It will not only teach them the importance of their imagination, but introduce them the wonderful world of Fantastica, and give them many good dreams to come.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
advait borate
Perhaps the most telling thing about Ende's "Neverending Story" is the type of reader who seems to respond to it. Just glancing at the other reader reviews, one sees children and adults, males and females. In an age where films, novels, and music are targetted to specific gender and age groups, this powerful novel stands out as appealing to all. Using simple prose elegantly translated from the original German by Ralph Mannheim, Ende tells the story of a young boy searching vainly for his identity. Alienated from his widowed father and isolated from his classmates, Bastian finds his sole solace in books. The "Neverending Story" is the story of Bastian's quest--through a fantastical world contained in leather-bound volume. Much like the reader, Bastian is slowly drawn into the intricate narrative. One of the few books written for children which appeals equally to boys and girls, Ende's work is ultimately an anagogical, luminous work. Its appeal is that the novel stands on a number of levels. To the child, it is an exciting adventure tale; to the adult, it is a powerful parable about the most fundamental and difficult search--the search for self. One of the most engaging works I've had the pleasure to read. Five stars seem woefully insufficient.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
grumpator
Greetings from Germany.

I am german and I've read the german book. I do not know how good the translation to english is done but the book is much more complex than the first movie maybe because they weren't able to film all the details because of the technical status back in 1984 but I love both the movie and the book. I first saw the movie when I was 5 years old and for me it appeared to be real until my mother told me that it wasn't. I really got into the movie and I still do the same way when I watch it. At the end of 2004 I read the book and I found out that there were some minor differences between the storyline of the movie and the book. The first movie shows only about one half of the book and the second movie shows a lo of the second part but not as close to the book as the first one and it does not have the deepness of the first because there are other actors and a classic soundtrack like in the first movie is missing. For me !!! Noah Hathaway !!! is the best Atréju (german pronounciation), Barret Oliver is the best Bastian and Tami Stronach is the best Childlike Empress! The book is really enhancing the movie and is changing and deepening some details. I really love it like I love the first movie and its soundtrack. Maybe I'll purchaise the english book some day to find out the quality of translation.

Thank you for your attention and I hope this review is a helping hand.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
chang
Reading this book transports the reader into that space where we dream and forget the limits of our finite reality. My whole family raved about this book, and every time I read it, I feel enriched and strangely enlightened. Michael Ende must have opened himself up to some pretty divine inspiration when writing this, because it speaks profoundly on many spiritual and religious points of thought and belief. The Neverending Story is a necessity for all who cherish imagination, wonder, and truth. (Sounds cheesy I know, but it's true!!)
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
elina
This was one of the first fantasy books I picked up (besides the Harry Potter series), and I fell in love with it right from he first page. Although there have been three decent movies, the book is far superior.
An elementary school boy named Bastian Balthizar Bux runs into an old bookstore after some bullies chase him. He takes "The Neverending Story" out of the shop and returns home to read it (I'm not promoting skipping school)
The ruler of the Empire of Fantastica, where all stories and dreams become reality) has been diagnosed with a disease that has baffled even the five hundred greatest doctors in Fantastica. It is up to Atreyu, a courageous warrior to find a way to cure the Empress.
Bastian thinks that what he is reading is just a story, but when things start getting emotional, he starts having an inner conflict with himself.
Later, Bastian finds himself in Fantastica, and learns that Sorceress Xayide, themost powerful in the realm is taking away his memories. Bastian must learn who he really is...
What's so cool about the book vs. the movies i there are about 7 chapters in the book that aren't even mentioned in the movie. The book is very imaginative, with excellent imagery. The book also provides a wealth of opportunity for writing fan fiction (in many of the chapters, the words "but that's another story, and it shall be told another time" appear, stretching the imagination. The book is 400+ pages (my version was only 380), but it seems like there could have been a thousand. This book will go by so fast, because you will be absorbed in it.
Kudos to Michael Ende! 5/5
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
biniberg
Having grown up loving the movie, I had to read the book as an adult. I love the movie just the way it is, but knowing when it was made (without CG, special effests, etc..) I knew lots of really cool stuff had probably been left out.
The book is actually both movies (1&2) so that was cool since I have only seen the second one a couple of times. (We all know is stinks compared to the first one. Of course gotta love J.B - RIP)
I wouldn't mind seeing a few of these left out parts in a new version of the movie, like the desert and lion part.
I only wish this one had the Orin on the cover like in the movie, that would be sweet. Also, I thought it was cool that the book is printed in two different color inks, one for the world of Fantasia, and one for bastians' world. Neat!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
sara ash
i got this book when i was in fourth grade, and trying to find something that looked interesting. i looked on the summer reading table, and saw The Neverending Story. i remembered this title from the tv show they had on HBO Family and so i bought it. WARNING:if you liked the show or movie, you

WILL be blown away!!! I started the book and was imediatly intranced. the imagination, creativity, and beauty put into this book is mindblowing. i couldnt put it down. from the title page, to the last page i was intranced. the charactors were so real i thought that i could just be walking down the street and if i saw them i would immediatly be able to reconize them. when you get halfway through the book and you think its over, you find the secound 'half' that i thing is much better than the first. its plot is unique, the charactors seem like best friends, the setting as wonderfull and diverse as the rainforest, and at the end you cry, because you feel as though your best friend has just moved away...
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
manashree
This book is far more than a children's story. it is a step by step revelation of the path of the everyday self into and through awakening as an integrated servant of Love in the universe. of particular importance to children around the age of 9 or 10 this story is bound to go in deep, serving the child's development towards being a self aware, spiritually directed adult in process of learning service to the true sources of Love.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
paula green
I'm loving the book but be warned that the library binding version is basically a paperback version with a hard exterior. The pro is that it is also more travel friendly since it's the size of a paperback but the con is that the paper is not acid free so it will probably yellow and deteriorate over time. If you are like me and want to keep this for your kids, spend the extra $3 and get the regular hardback.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
chethan
I know this book is mainly for young adults, but it shouldn't be limited to just them. I've been a fan of the movie since before I can remember. I only picked up the book about three years ago, and I'm still amazed by how profound this book is. Aside from the loveable characters and their adventures you have a whole hidden (but not so hidden) message about how we treat ourselves. Should a young adult pick up on that? Besides, what an awesome way of telling a story. Having the first letter of every Chapter make the alaphabet! The story is about a story within a story, within a story, and then it makes you wonder if your standind in a story as well? Ah, what a trip! All I know is no matter what the age, this is a must read. It was like my bible through high school, as twisted and corney as that sounds.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
aoife
First off I must caution that I was appalled by the way the movie cheapened the story. The book is incredibly written, and absolutely beautiful. What most readers who gave the book low scores fail to realize is the innate wisdom the book offers all ages. I have read the book every several years from age 8 and up. I am now in my thirties. Each time, and at each stage of life, the philosophy and sagaciousness of the book are quite striking... at least to those who are willing to listen. This is not a tawdry fantasy romp, but rather a haunting reflection of inherent human nature and inner struggle. The wisdom offered is not blatantly presented, but rather, quietly hidden, so only the most attentive and intelligent reader may discover them. One must have an open mind and reread many times to fully grasp the wonder of this work.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
jessie wilson
I read this book in its original, hard-cover release over fifteen years ago, when I was in my twenties. I loved it and gave copies of it to each of my friends to read. It then went out of print, and was replaced by the paperback version and the movie. Neither of these substitutes can compare to the magic of watching the pages change from green to red and then back again. Read this book, whatever your age, but only in the hardcover edition!
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
t dunham
Bastain Balthzar Bux thinks he is not wanted by his father since his mother died. He feels the only way to get away is to read. He steals a book, "The Neverending Story", and goes into his school's attic to read it. Bastain is suprised when he seems to become a part of the book. Bastain is a very important person because he helped to save Fantastica. But, he loses his memory little by little. All in all, a good read for the younger audience.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
cinda
The Neverending Story by Michael Ende is a fantastic book that has been around for years and will continue to be. This well written book takes you to a world of fantasy where you can become lost in the book and not want to put it down. In the story anything can happen and most of the time it does. Bastian, the main character, is taken to Fantastica to give the Childlike Empress a new name. But, to give her this new name he must go on a journey,far away from Earth. He learns about friendship and how to trust people you don't really know. Although he gets conceited towards the end he learns that he doesn't want power, but all he wants to be is loved. His wishes are running short and he's losing all memories of his world. To make it home he must find the true meaning of why he wants to go home. He makes it home to find his months of long journey in Fantastica was only a day on earth and his father, which he hasn't been close to since his mother died, was shocked when Bastian returned with many, many stories. Over all, I recommend this book to all ages, 9 to 99. So if you haven't read this book, go out and buy it!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
stephen richter
I can't recall when or why I decided to read this book, but I'm glad I did. I was unfamiliar with the author and the movie, so I really had no idea what to expect. Based on the five stars sitting atop this review, I'm sure you have know problem guessing I liked what I found.

This author tackled things in this story that he could have really screwed up on, but he handled them with a grace I've rarely seen. Not only that, but he successfully changed the story in a whole new one without making te book seem choppy.

I wouldn't recommend reading this book if you don't have the time to dedicate the necessary attention to it. This book is so full of genius ideas and concepts, I think everyone should have a clear head to enjoy it to it's fullest potential.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
diesel pfingsten
I do love the movie but the book is even better. I just couldn't put it down. It's a lot like "The Pagemaster". A young boy gets sucked into his own story and comes back a different person. I have read about all fairylands, Oz, Narnia, Terebithia, Neverland and Harry Potter's World, but Fantasica is the Mother of all Fairylands. At the end I realized that the greatest gift I could give to Mr. Wogglebug was the Water of Life.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
despina
Through many years of exciting adventures, i must say that The Never Ending Story was the very first book that related with me, because of my hunger for adventure and fantasy. I found myself reading each chapter intently and wanting more of the book, every time I finished a page. Bastian, being a small fat kid whose life was just another joke, came across an old book in which captivated him when he read the title. Continuing through the book, in the attic of his school, he found out that he was not just reading an ordinary book; he was apart of a Never Ending Story. In breath taking adventures he had traveled with a warrior named Atreyu, as he read, Searching a cure for the Child-like-Empress' illness. As creatures, storms and a "Nothing" attacked Atreyu, and his reader (Bastian), they embarked upon wild excitement that could never be forgotten... accept when Bastian is pulled into the Story and gradually losing his memory. With a twist to the Plot you will be amazed of what will happen before Bastian barely slips back on earth. It is one of the most intriguing books that i have ever read. Who ever is considering the book... Please GET IT!!! A Picky Reader! jg
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
inder
This is one of the books everyone should read once in a life. however I strongly disagree with the 'age: 9-12' thing. Made up as a tale it's full of serious stuff, not likely understood by small children. I'd suggest reading it after 14 years. (Btw my 10 year old daughter asked for this book just yesterday, I told her to wait some years.)
For those who have seen the movie I must say it was spoiled in many ways comparing to the book. (Yes, I liked the movie very well, and read the book only years after...)
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
elizabeth fuller
The book I read is called the "Neverending Story", an adventure story where a boy named Bastian, a weakling, scaredy-cat, and failure. One day he steals a book from a small bookshop where he was hiding and ran away to school, where he sneaked into the school attic. He began reading and found out that in the book, a dark force called "The Nothing" was consuming a world called Fantastica. At the heart of Fantastica is the Ivory Tower, where the people gathered to discuss the situation. They called upon Atreyu, a plains warrior, to find a cure for the Empress, the only one that can save Fantastica. Atreyu had many difficulties, faced dangers, met friends, and almost got consumed by The Nothing. He ended up back at the Ivory Tower when the remains of Fantastica where in utter space. Bastian was able to communicate to the Empress and saved Fantastica from total destruction. Bastian was granted as many wishes as he wanted, so he restored Fantastica, rode on the white dragon Falcor, and was able to ride him on Earth.

I thought this book was influential because it taught me more about Intellectual Perseverance, to never give up, no matter the situation. Before I read this book I thought it would be boring and long, considering the title. But after I read it, I was glad I got the book. This book told me that all people have dreams and a meaning in life. I learned that sometimes you have to sacrifice some things for others, no matter how hard it may be. The style of this book is unique not only because of the story but how the chapters are made. There are 26 chapters, every chapter starting with a big letter in the alphabet on the beginning page, decorated to describe the chapter's main idea. "The Neverending Story" is a very touching book that will inspire many.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
juliet jackson
I'm actually the '17-year old gamer', but I love to read books, too. This book made a huge impact on me. I honestly believe it changed me completely...in a good way, of course. Never before have I read a book so detailed, engrossing, and wonderful. It's way better than the movies. The movies are good, but not as good as the book. As soon as I picked up this book, I was hooked. Really, I couldn't put it down for a second. It's a great and imaginative story about a friendless boy who escapes into a fantasy world via an old book. Michael Ende is one of the best writers ever. He conveys his messages well, and writes even better. This book is wonderful, and I think you'd enjoy it very much.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
adolfo
I remember going to the theater to see this many years ago when my girls were young. What a wonderful movie this was so now I want to buy the book and read it. I bought the VCR movie and later the DVD. Only thing is, in the movie at the theater, when the bullies put Bastian in the dumpster one of them pulled Bastian's cap off his head and put it on his own. Later when Bastian and Falcor come to Bastians world and see the 3 bullies running down the street, Falcor swoops down and Bastian grabs his cap off the boy's head. That scene is not in the VCR or DVD version of the movie. But the movie is one of the best I have ever seen. Just absolutely love it. I know I will enjoy the book.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
angie
This remains one of the best boks I have ever read. I have never read anything like it - it is simply amazing how you as a reader are actually pulled into the story and experience it at first hand - you are actually a part of the story. The magic is alive, it really changes you as you read. The book has An INCREDIBLE depth to it; if you read betwen the lines it contains some of the deepest spiritual secrets - it has truly mystical dimensions. There are very few books of this calibre. (And, by the way, forget the film!) ALso, do yourself a favour and buy the hardcover. This is printed in two colours, green for the real world and red for when you are in Fantasia. It makes a big difference!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
iram
This is one of the few books I have choosen to read mord than once (at least 3 times).

I was introduced to this book by a friend. I was in High School, I had seen the movie in my younger days, but was unimpressed, I also had no idea that there was a book. I read the book on my friend's recommendation, I was very impressed. The movie did not do the story justice and took way too much artistic license.

The story began and I wished that it would never end. I felt the same way Bastian does when he reaches the end of a story and doesn't want to leave the characters. This is one of the few books that I have gotten completely into. I was so involved in the story that I even found myself holding my breath as Falkor dove into the water to retrieve the Auryn.

I love that there are 26 chapters and each begins with a letter of the alphabet, which are illustrated (I did not notice this until the 2nd or 3rd time). There is one infuriating thing: 'That is a story to be told at another time..". Which of course never were, I looked for another book by the Author in which he did tell them at another time, but no such luck. I may just have to write them myself. *sigh*

Any way I highly recommend this book for anyone who likes fantasy or just a good story.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
alex stronach
I have always been one of those people that sees a movie and must read the book. Well since I had grown up watching The Neverending Story on the Disney Channel, it had never really occured to me that there maybe a novel of the same title, so I must admit my surprise when browsing through a bookstore, I came across this fantastic book. I strongly recommend this book to anyone who loves being captured in a story. I first read this novel when I was in 6th grade, and now that I am about to graduate college, I have probably read this book 10 times since and everytime I find another reason to love it. Do yourself a favor and read this book.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
jessie jury
Dear Michael Ende,

Since I was a child, the video's made of your classic book had always been the building block of every dream and fantasy I had. I remember sitting home at the age of Six in front of my TV, captured by The Neverending Story. Now, as a teenager, I have read the actual book, and I fully appreciate the movie for its gifts to me as a child, but in all truthfulness, the book itself it's simply a piece of art, which in no way can ever be captured in film; to me it is a gateway to one's own imagination, and you just provide the storyline for the reader.

When I read your book for the first time, I did not set it down once. I read the full 445 pages from start to end hanging on every last word. There are so many aspects of life which I find utterly boring, and most of the time I find most books quite plain. But to me, your "creation" or "masterpiece" which I consider quite amazing, seems to literally be a book written from the dreams of children, stories we had not heart of yet in nursery rhymes, or old folk tales long forgotten. I felt as if I were in every scene in the story, living the adventure as if it were my own. Your main character's Bastian and Atreyu seemed to make up the person I was. Bastian being a shy, timid boy, and Atreyu being a strong, confident worrier. I felt a connection with both of the characters, which helped me relate to your book much more and the choices the characters made during their adventures.

As a child, I did not have many friends. No siblings, and no neighbors to play with; watching your movies and reading your book was a way for me to get to have my own adventures as a child. I did not have imaginary friends, but I did imagine myself quite often as if I were in your stories, how the people would talk to me, different things I would do. For example, I would love to get to sit down and talk to some of the characters, asking them about their lives, and where they had been.

There were many times in the story you started to trail off into side stories, but ended them by saying "But that is another story and will be told another time". You only wrote one book, so was that you way of giving the reader his or her own power of imagination to think of what the story could possibly be? Or were you planning on writing a sequel to the story, and never got the time?

Out of curiosity of your life, I read your biography. Wondering perhaps, were you an only child, whose dreams and fantasies later ended up on the pages of The Neverending Story? Because it is not everyday that the ordinary person creates such an abstract story as the one you wrote. Come to find, you were an only child growing up in Germany during the Holocaust, with parents who did not get along. At times I feel as if I dislike my own family life, but to think of yours and how you must have dealt with things makes me appreciate the love my family has. I can imagine you sitting at home, playing with your toys thinking of adventures inside your head, which you're ultimately never forgot. The Neverending Story must have been a long growing story within your mind, which had accumulated bits and parts through your life. As a child, you were said to have many pets, which you're later had play main parts in your book. Also, you were said to be fascinated with the Dr.Doolittle books; was that the inspiration you had to create your story and characters? It quite surprised me to realize that many of the scenes and characters within your book have a deeper connection than just fantasy to you. One of the main characters, Bastian, was actually portrayed from a childhood friend of yours who died? Was the fact that you loved horseback riding was possibly a key to why Atreyu was a skilled horseback rider? There are many questions I have had in my mind about your story since I was a child. They are endless in my mind, but the one that never ends (no pun intended) is how one person can create such a vivid story within their own mind, and somehow put in into words powerful enough for others to see what you saw.

Even today at the age of Sixteen, I wish with my full heart that if even in a dream, somehow, I could experience the adventure your created. To ride on the back of Falkor, to sit with the children in Silver City, or to lie at night and count the stars in the forest of Perlin. All this may seem very childish and young, but to me the story is still as real as it was when I was six years old. I am still captivated by every detail of your story, and there are still many aspects of it, which I have yet to understand fully.

I have heard of you being called a philosopher in the past. Much like how Einstein or Franklin were men deeply compassionate with science and society, you were in a sense the "philosopher" of the imagination and mind. Some may just view you as a children's book author, but I believe only the unimaginative would say that. It is very hard for me to see how anyone could possibly not agree with the fact that The Neverending Story is a literary masterpiece. It seems to engulf the whole view of childhood fantasy in one, and can bring out the child in anyone who sits down to read it.

Looking back, when I was younger you story kept me company when I did not have friends to spend my time with. I was consumed with the plot, the storyline, the characters, and every detail you put into it. Ten years later, although I am it seems a different person, it keeps the same connection with me as it did ten years ago. I am still captivated by the beauty and imagery in every page you wrote. The most magnificent part of your book was in Chapter XIII when you described Perlin, The Night Forest. "Soon the velvety darkness all around Bastian and Moon Child, over and under them on every side, was filled with rapidly growing luminous plants. A globe of radiant colors, a new luminous world hovered in the Nowhere, and grew and grew. And its innermost center Bastian and Moon Child sat hand in hand, looking around them with their eyes of wonder." This small piece of work only shows a tiny example of your gift. Passages like these fill my mind with colors and images so vivid even I forget where I am, and at times I even feel like I have "fallen" into the book, and am experiencing it all first hand.

You may never comprehend the extent of that of The Neverending Story. I wish it were a book every child was made to read. I personally have lost count at how many times I have read your book. That doesn't seem surprising to me though, for my copy of the book is literally falling apart. Yet, on a rainy day at home, instead of reaching for my brand new hard cover books, I always pick up my warn, tattered copy of The Neverending Story, because no matter how many times I read it, it always seem to have more stories and new adventures every time I do. So in a sense, to me, and hopefully others, your book is in fact, The Neverending Story.

Sincerely and with Much Love,

Cassie

e-mail: [email protected]
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
nicolas b
This was such a good book. If you've seen the movie, you've seen nothing! This book almost made me cry when I finished reading it, because it was so good. Every time I opened it, it came to life, and I felt like I actually knew the characters. I hope everyone who reads what I'm writing considers reading it. There are a bunch of parts from the book that were not even in the movie. READ IT!!!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
dora kessler
It took me one week to finish reading this book which is very starange considering I can read almost any book in less than three days. But this book was so enveloping I found myself reading over whole chapters just to make sure I completely digested every word. I had watched the movie when i was very young and now that I've read the book I have a new profound respect for the writers work.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
andriy
Well, I watched the Neverending story constantly as a kid and still love the movie today as one of my favorites. The book starts off great in my opinion there were some small differences with names and things like Fantastica instead of Fantasia but halfway through the book it is pretty much where the movie ends. But, the book keeps going and Bastian takes a whole seperate adventure it is almost like two books. I could be biased from watching the movie first and not reading the book but. I still enjoyed the first half of the book but the end seemed to drag and I found Bastians adventure kind of boring.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
tracy cutchlow
This is one of the greatest fantasy classics ever written, and Michael Ende certainly deserves at least the same recognition as Tolkien.
This story has it all: Likable characters, a unique setting, lots of both action and comedy - amd it makes you think, too. For anyone who likes fantasy, this is a must-read, and for everyone else: Read it anyway!
For those of you who have only seen the abysmal and absolutely horrible movie: Please read the book, so you won't go around thinking Ende's story is that bad!
And for those of you who are lucky enough to never have seen the movie: Don't! It doesn't do the book justice in any way whatsoever!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
ruby straaten
I missed this book as a child, but came across it in a bookstore and had to buy it. I am certainly glad I did. For those of you who only know Bastian from the movie, you are sadly robbing yourself of a fantastic adventure. You too, will get "pullled" into the story. So what are you waiting for? Go! Go find Childlike Empress a new name, Go save Fantastica! Oh, but do say hello to Falkor for me.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
shanzeh khurram
I don't know if anybody else has noticed this, but Micheal Ende must have been spiritually enlightened, to have written this book.

For starters, the fact that Bastain reads a story and becomes part of it, is Ende's way of telling the reader that everything is just a story, even Bastians "Reality".

Fantastica is a creation of the human mind. For a human to exist they're mind needs to be full of stories. That's why fantastica dies when no human makes up stories for it.

At the Southern Oracle, Ende perfectly descirbes what it is to become spiritually enlightened.

Atreyu must pass through three magic gates.

The first one Is guarded by two sphinxes. If the sphinxes open their eyes as atreyu is walking through he will be rooted to the spot until he has answered all the riddles in the universe.

The second gate is a magic mirror gate, in which you see a reflection of yourself. It states in the book that some people run screaming from what they see in that mirror. That's because alot of people aren't aware of their true self, and if someone were to show them what they really are, they would be terrified. Sometimes people go to seek emotional help, and they find out who they really have become, and it's not easy. That's what Ende was showing us with the Magic Mirror gate. It shows the truth.

The third gate, doesn't open unless you forget why you wanted to go through it. This is one of the most amazing ideas ever.

If you want to become enlightened you can't, because to become enlightened, you must let go of your story (your mind). So for the mind to "want" to get enlightened, it gets in the way. Your story needs to be gone, before you can become enlightened. You can't "Want" to become enlightened. So that's what the third gate is.

Then we come to the Old man of Wandering mountain, where we learn that the Neverending story is a story that has already been written, and is unchangable before and after, and in starting to read the story from the beginning creates a vicious cycle that will never end unless Bastian breaks it. We learn there that our whole life is just a story in our imagination.

Later in the book, Bastain learns that Fantastica lies on a bed of memories. This is because we would not exist without memories.

Think about it. Your whole lives story is a memory. Fantasica is a story of the human mind, and the human mind is based on memories. Then he must forget who he his, to go back to his world. In other words become enlightened. Let go of the "self", the "I" that is just an illusion.

This is a brilliant book. I've read it 2 or 3 times, and am in the middle of reading it again. It is SO amazing.

The old man of wandering mountain (chapter 12) is one of the most brilliant sections of writing I have ever read. It nails the nature of the universe more clearly than any science book, astrology, or anything that's meant to teach what Michal Ende put so brilliantly into this book.

If you've already read it, read it again with this in mind. It's like a different story.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
adrian barker
I first read this book while stranded in the desert with my parents as a child. I absolutely couldn't put it down. This is one of the best books I have ever read. The most remarkable thing I found: everytime I read it I see all new things. It's as if the book grows up with you. This is money well spent. The old hardcover I have even has the Auryn right on the cover.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
freda
I read this book a while ago, actually only a year ago, but you know how it goes from book to book. From what I remember it was an excellent book, even better than the movie (which was my childhood favorite). It combined fantasy and reality perfectly, and really gave the reader the opportunity to place themselves in the hands of the author, and let him take them wherever. I guess the sad part is, this review I mostly wrote because I found this phrase in another book and was trying to remember if it was from the Neverending story or not. "the Baobob tree" WHERE IS THAT FROM, PLEASE HELP!! EMAIL ME!! this stuff kills me. oh by the way, the best book I have ever read is Infinite Jest, it is similar to Michael's description of a million monkeys on tyepwriters. Well I'll leave it at that.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
kaora
I was uncertain about buying this book since the movie had disappointed me, but now I am SO GLAD that I did so. This story is much better than the snippet portrayed inthe film and it reminded me of Narnia and the Phantom tollbooth combined. This is the kind of faerie tale that we need, for children and adults alike.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
renata mccain
This is one of the best books ever written. It keeps you tumbling through a brilliantly described world that overwhelms you with its complete reality and lack thereof. there is nothing stnager or more wonderful than this book. I was literally out of breath when I finished reading parts of it. I will never get rid of my copy of this mind-bending book.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
liza h
"Die Unendliche Geschichte"
Michael Ende's novel first came to my attention after I had seen the wonderful Warner Bros film in 1984. Just a teenager at the time, I sought out the book and read it. It was fantastic, a book I intended to keep for the rest of my life. But it was a yellowing, cheap paperback re-released off the back of the movie. So one day trawling through the catalogues at the store, it occurred to me to check out if the book was still in print. It was. And how.
When my copy arrived, I hadn't realised the effort that had been put into its print. The cover art is crisply reproduced with firm hardbacking, but the real surprise was to be found inside; the text is printed in alternating purple (for Bastian's story) and green (for the events within the storybook itself). It's one of those books you want to stick on the shelf and never touch again because you want to preserve its beauty, although well-thumbed books take on an appreciated beauty of their own. I love this book, I would've paid twice the price for it.
Hope you enjoy it as much.
NOTE: Michael Ende's novel is longer than the film, which was based only on the first half of the book. The translation is the original one by Ralph Manheim. For trivialists, Ende died in 1995, Manheim in 1992.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
brenda vasquez
It's one of the best books I've ever read. I have no words to describe it. If you want to know more, look at the other people's reviews. Sorry I didn't say anything more, I'm not good at reviewing things. What I can say, is that you MUST have this book at your library at home. This text refers nowhere. I read this book in Hebrew.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
maheen masroor
This is dark children's fantasy at its, um, most absorbing. I only wish I could read the original German; some of the book's poetry is obviously lost in translation. But the story and characters are intact and wonderful. The second half of the book is less satisfying than the first; it is not a story I'd want to find myself in, but Bastian's adventure is definitely exciting enough for adults and children both.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
pattie
As a young child I would slip away into my in-house school library at lunchtimes and read this book. The words leapt off the page and each of them were entirely magical.

Just recently, and (now rapidly approaching middle age) I have again peeked inside its magical covers.

With some books, the passage of time can lead to disappointment. Our memories of what we have read as children can become distorted. Not so with this book. It has a timeless quality. It is a beautiful book and I thoroughly recommend it.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
laura brown
Micheal Ende wrote a fantastic book. (Taking place in the land of "Fantastica" no less.) It's no wonder this book was made into THREE (poorly done) movies. It's not only great for children, but I reread recently, and it's still great. The story is richly told, with plenty of detail for the imaginative and the "believers" in miracles. Great book!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
susan williams
I read this book when I was about 10 years old ( In the german version) Now, being 32 I just ordered it for my Goddaughter. Just reading the other reviews made old memories come back to me: Nights spent with the flashlight under the blanket, being up way past bedtime and not being able to stop reading... I would say that besides Tolkiens "Lord of the Rings" this book was one of my favorites fantasie books when I grew up. I would definetely reccomend it to anyone.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
jingjing
If you have not read this book then you are missing out on a piece of literary history. Make sure you get the version that has the green and red print. Some paperback versions use only black lettering and that misses a significant point of the book (that we are all Bastian and reading the same book).
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
barb hope
This is a true work of art! i love it! Every moment of reading it was a absolute treasure. This book has all the qualifications to be the best book in my case, it has everything(fantasy, adventure, poetry, mystery, etc.,). The movie is a failure compared to what Michael Ende wrote. it is a true masterpiece!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
maegan
I can't believe the way Mr. Ende has set up thisbook. I love this book and have fuond no one except the store books who carry it. I've read this book two times already. I was so mezmirized by it that I want to keep reading it. Every time I read it I find something new that I missed the first time that I read it.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
nate klarfeld
When I was younger I was enchanted by this glorious tale of strange creatures and stories that never end...Then I decided to invest in the paperback...Let me just tell you, the book is SO much greater and much more polished then any of the movies, and it explains more about Bastian and his friends than the tip-of-the-iceburg movies do, either. I am now the proud owner of a first-edition mint copy (english)! I recommend it to EVERYONE with vision and imagination! Enjoy it! Savor it! *^_^*
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
semccarney
The Neverending Story is a great book about a young boy that goes on an incredible journey. In the course of the journey he loses his identity and must learn to love who he is in order to get back home. An inspiring read.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
janette
If you could sum it up in a word: WOW! This is the first book I have fallen in love with and the one I recommend to all. If your attention span is the size of a walnut, this book will still pull you in. It is amazing. And if you watched the movies, you much get the book. The movies cannnot match it!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
ashley jackson
When I first saw the movie "The Neverending Story" as a child, I was enthralled. And when I found the book in the library, I was ecstatic - I could have adventures like Bastian's! It was just Bastian's story in print, though - a crushing disappointment for a ten year old. I read it anyway, and realized I loved it even more than the movie. I checked it out of the library to read again every month until i had enough allowance saved to buy it, although I'm still, to this day, looking for the book Bastian found! In short, this is my favorite fairy tale of all time. When I have kids, they're hearing it. Grandkids? Them, too. And if anyone can lay their hands on the book Bastian found, please let me know....
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
pouli mukhujje
The Neverending Story, by Michael Ende, is a wonderful departure from the ordinary, and a classic childhood fantasy story, with imaginary creatures, and a child's utopia turned to a dystopia. This story brings you into the world of Bastian Balthazar Bux, a below-average student, with an above-average weight, and few friends. He encounters a crotchety old book seller, and finds himself stealing a book right from under his nose.
The book is The Neverending Story, about a seeming wonderland, a story of stories, but this wonderland has a problem. It is being eaten away by nothing, and only one person can stop it. Bastian feels himself getting sucked into the story, literally feeling everything the characters did, and hearing them, and finding that they hear him, also. Soon he is entirely in Fantastica, and you, the reader, follow him through his adventures there.
I found this book to be very exciting, and although it seems childish, it is interesting, and has you believing in fantasies once again. I love some action and mystery in novels, and although this is not your typical action or mystery story, it does involve some mystery, and much action and suspense. It is a fascinating twist on the existence of magic and fantasy creatures, and what happens to a story once it is read.
The only complaint I have about this novel is the lack of maturity. The novel is a sweet one, and brings back old fantasies, but it lacks a sense of maturity, which to me is a little frustrating. I got easily frustrated near the end of the novel, when Bastian is having a hard time, but is portrayed much less like what I believe anyone can quite relate to. Also, the story got a little tedious at times, when the action simmered some, and nothing was really happening. After getting through those sections, though, the book more than made up for it with action-packed segments.
I would suggest The Neverending Story for anyone who wants an adventure, a fairy tale, and much fun throughout the story. This book is charming, and I really enjoyed it. You will definitely enjoy the silly antics of a child's imagination, and the adventures of a child learning the value of friends and family as I did. I would definitely say it's a book worth remembering.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
antoaneta
When was the last time you cried reading a book? The Neverending Story has hurt me more and made me happier than any other book I have ever read. Fantasia's enchanting, the story enthralling and Bastian so real in his wishes that you feel his mistakes are yours, too. Don't forget who you are.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
wally
If you like story telling, fantasies, wisdom, secrets, magic, dreams, thriller, heros then after reading this book you will learn that there are lot more than that which you have not felt yet!but you will love it.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
jimmy la rue
It is difficult to find words equal to the task of praising this novel. I first received it as a gift when I was thirteen. I have read it two or three times a year since then, and I am now thirty. Ende uses the adventures of a fat, nerdy little kid launched into an imaginary world of fantasy to expose the mysteries at the heart of the human soul. Although a simple and action-packed tale you could read to a child of nine or ten at bedtime, this story is in fact an intricate and elegant allegory about the nature of life, love, divine inspiration, the written word and the joy and dangers of reading. It is a book that exalts the soul and has enriched my life immeasurably. You will not regret reading it.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
julie thompson
I love this book! I've seen the movie, and it was horrible! For one, it stops half way through, and skips key parts that make the story more interesting.
The book starts when a not-so-heroic boy named Bastian runs into a book shop to escape some bullies, when he happens upon the Neverending Story. Bastian retreats to the forgotten attic of his school and begins to read. Bastian is swept into the magical world of Fantastica, which is in great danger...
My favorite character is Grogroman, the Many-Colored Death of the Desert of Colors(not in the movie). Michael Ende is one of the most imaginative authors I've read(and I've read quite a bit). This is a must-read book you have to have!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
chip wiginton
This story is pretty much all about what we imaginative daydreamers thrive off of. The story is about an unheroic boy named Bastian Balthazar Bux who steals and reads a book called "The Neverending Story," getting more and more drawn into it as he reads. He soon finds that he is a character in the story and needs to enter the magical land of Fantastica in order to save the land and its Empress. If you have ever found yourself wishing that this kind of thing was real until you almost throw up, then this is definetly the book for you. It was originally written in German, but the translation is very intelligent. It is a good book. READ IT.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
margot saunders
This book is easy enough to get through. There is always something going on and happens to be more eventful than either of the movies made from it.

A sweet tale, appreciating the presentation in hardcover is all the more rewarding.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
donna keesan
This book will take you away,,, to the neverending story. I like how the book differenciates the story itself with different color print (the book the boy reads is in a different color) so you know which part is the story and which part is the book the boy in the story is reading! Buy it in hardcover, it gives you a sense of permanence.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
bronwyn
Many of these reviews are for a screenwriting book, not the fantasy novel described here. I read this as a teenager and loved it; now I'm ordering it to read again 30 years later and hoping my children will love it too. It was one of those books that I discovered on my own; no teacher or brother recommended it. I just plucked it off the library shelf, and that made it even more special. I remember the text being beautiful as well. I hope this lives up to my memory!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
jaymes
This book was really interesting.It took me a while to read but i didn't care it was sooo good! The only thing i didn't like about it is by the end of the book i hadn't remembered some of the characters cuase there were sooooo many! REad this book! its awesome!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
patrick king
This is perhaps the greatest children's fantasy ever written, and it's not only for children. It is quite profound, especially the second half, and I teach it regularly as part of a university course on "spiritual fantasies."

We also read Ende's 'Momo,' another wonderful fantasy not to be missed -- about our obsession with "saving time" and how that affects our ability to live. I am amazed that this shorter novel is out of print in the US, but it can easily be ordered from the UK.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
jezleen
No book loving house should be without this classic. The hardback is beautifully done - it even has text in two different colors: green/brown. One is about the boy in HIS world and the other color is about the boy in the other world... Cleverly done. I loved this book as a kid and rereading it as an adult brings back fond memories - I'm keeping this for my daughter to read one day. If you can get your hands on a hardback book, buy it quick - this book is very hard to find. (I believe it's out of print.)
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
ray clark
I first read this book as a teenager, and it should be required reading for anyone with an imagination. I was so glad to see an edition with the original two-color text incorporated. I'd contemplated buying the book for a long time, but could never find a copy with the red and green text. I'm very pleased to add it to my collection now.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
elifobeth
I don't think I can say anything that no one else has said - the first half of the book was good, the second half was boring. It should have been split into two novels, with the second part being more developed.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
amanda thompson
This book was interesting to read because I thought it would be like "The Neverending Story" movie, but instead the book goes through both "The Neverending Story" 1 & 2. It has alot more details and you find out how far off the movies ventured from the book. The first few chapters are similar to the original movie then the rest of the book is about Bastian losing his memories and trying to get home. It is an interesting book, but some parts get rather dry. Enjoy with a grain of salt.
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
malina
Full Review on my blog:

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Ok, I love the Neverending story movie. It is a true classic. I think this is one of the rare cases where the book is not as good as the movie adaptation.

The Neverending story really should have been two books in my opinion. There are really two stories. One story is about Atreyu and his quest to find a cure for the illness plaguing the child like empress. The other story is Bastions time in Fantastica. I had a really hard time switching gears from Atreyu's story to Bastions. Also, once Bastion got to Fantastica I thought the book got really slow. It felt less like a quest story and more like a tour of Fantastica.

I was really into the first half of the book but honestly almost didn't finish because it got pretty boring to me.

I also wasn't crazy about the end. Bastion tells his father all about Fantastica and his dad believes him. No questions. Nothing. There is also a book store owner who has also been to Fantastica so his acceptance I understood. But it isn't said if Bastion's father had been or knew about Fantastica one way or the other. If not then it seems strange he would just accept that his son was gone two days and fell into a book. I don't think I would accept that.

If you are really into the fantasy genre and just love details and world building then you would probably enjoy this book. If you have a low tolerance for that without too much plot then just see the movie.

This review by Jane B Night. Author of Educating Autumn
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
motahareh
This book is fantastic, no pun intended. Kids will enjoy it for just the fantasy, but adults will have the added attraction of the novel's allegorical slant. I won't tell what that is because I don't want to ruin the surprise. There's a lot to enjoy here.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
heather petsche
I have been looking for this book for years and finally I have it!

Its a wonderful and enchanting story, you get to meet many charming characters along the way, discovering the fantasy world of Fantastica.

A beautifully written story tale for both young and old.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
tina yates
I love this book! It is witty and funny, yet it can be serious. Unhappiness drives our main hero to utter desperation, and at times your head can not bear to read another word. It is joyful and filled with passion. Read this or else...
★ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆
sundry
Have to give it one star, partly through my own fault. I didn't listen to it right away and when it was listened to found disc 1 to be defective towards the end and unintelligible. My advice to anyone would be to make sure you plan on listening to it Immediately. I wasn't able to listen to it right away and missed the return date. Soooo yeah.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
hilde
I would say it's a classic, Ende's way of writting its just great. I didnt see the movie, I wasnt even born back then, but I found the book (in spanish) and I just loved it! everytime I read it its like the first; I never stop of getting into each character's shoes. Its really great, and the colors fot the Neverending story <the book> and Bastian's reality, which makes it even better. If u are reading the book because of the movie, u will probably think its really long. But dont let the movie fool you, the movie its just the half <or maybe less>. Buy it! Its worth it!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
lorenzo
This book is very well written. It's about a boy who steals a book and hides out in the attic of his school to read it. Little does he know the book will take him farther than he's ever gone before, and he will have to make it back to his world without losing his memory. I would reccomend this book to anyone who likes alot of action and fantasy. The only thing some of you might not like about this book is that it's very long. I'm not complaining or anything, but I know some people don't like long books. (I'm just warning you) Despite it's length, it's a very good book!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
yasemin
It was the best book I have EVER read and the biggest. The detail was amazing and I saw the movie after I read the book and I was disappointed because the movie seemed so short and when I read the book, I really felt like I was Artrey and Bastian. The last half of the book was great! The movie missed SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO MUCH!!!!! Sure, a movie can't be that long, but I have to say, anyone, young or old MUST read this book!!! I'm only 14, you may think, what do I know but that book touched me like no other!!! Amazing! I would rate this book as high as the stars go! Too bad they only go to 5!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Jas :)
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
beverly grostern
If you never read the neverending story, do it now! that's what I can recommend.

This book has captured my mind for many years, and I'm sure it'll capture you too, if you have some fantasy in your heart.

I had the luck of seeing the movie first. Though funny and sweet, it does not even scratch the cover of the book.

The story is breathtaking, the charachters full of life and the end, that's what I loved most.

(I can even admit I had tears in my eyes when I turned the last page).

Did I already say I recommend it?
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
loris
I read this book when it came out, and I rate it as one of the best books I ever read at the time. The plot engulfs you and takes you into another world. The character development is excellent. This book teaches hope, teaches one to confront their fears, and empowers younger teens and pre-teens. Highly recommend (much better than the movie).
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
katherine tom
I strongly recomend this book for recreational reading. The author does an excellent job in creating a whole new world. The characters are suprisingly deep, despite how briefly some of them appear in the story. This book truly is a "neverending story", in that the writer leaves the story open for other books in many places. Three movies have come about as a result of this work. As always, however the book is much better. Anyone who does not read this book will miss out on a great story!
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
rebecca czarnecki
I have fond memories of reading this book as a kid, which is why I am irreversibly biased against editions that do not feature the Auryn prominently on the cover, nor make use of red and green ink to tell the story. It really should not be impossible to find an English-language version of this book that's both affordable and contains these elements, and yet, apparently, readers who want these things will have to order the leatherbound, metal Auryn edition for $200.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
neil jeffery
This sweeping tale of love lost and love found, while not never ending, is very good. It is very long, but the quality of the thing justifies it. That's what I'm talking about. The quality of the thing. The quality! The quality of the thing!
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
francine
I've never seen the famed movie version of this book. In fact, I didn't know anything about it except there was a dragon like being who was white and had a lion face. So when I needed something simple to read, I picked this up, hoping for something close to "The Princess Bride" or maybe "The Last Unicorn."

I was wrong.

"The Neverending Story" is about a boy who literally gets pulled into a good book, but really it is a philosophical novel about stories, whishes, reality and fantasy. All good stuff, but not what I was looking for. Reading this book is a little like being in my philosophy class. I don't really understand why I thought this was a children's book before-I don't know anyone under the age of 12, at the youngest, who would have really understood the deeper parts of it.

That said, I still liked the book. But I probably won't ever read it again, so three stars from me. Perhaps I'm not the kind of person who can appreciate a book like this one.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
eric j gates
The Neverending Story by Michael Ende is a wonderful book. The fantastic images and elaborate detail portrays real life in a very surreal manner. The book has many levels of meaning, and is a pleasure to read. The determination of Atreyu, the main character and hero, is inspiring and entertaining. Though the events are usually unrealistic, they are symbolic of the obstacles we face in our everyday lives. I recommend anyone needing a break from reality to read this book; it is a fun way to reflect on your life.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
heather perkins
This story is extraordinary. It keeps you thinking and you can't take your mind off of it. It's a magical story of a boy named Bastian Balthazar Bux who finds a magical book that sends him to a magical land named Fantasia. Theres a lot of magical stuff in this book and all Harry Potter fans will love it. Not only that but readers will think of it as a Neverending (in reading it) story.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
nathan webber
I don't have much to say about this book, but I would defineately suggest it to anyone. There are many parallels between Atreyu and Christ. And something else for all you Bible scholars out there, I picked up on a lot of parallels between the Childlike Empress and the God the Father. This is especially evident when Falkor tells Atreyu about her on their way to The Ivory Tower. I enjoy the first half of the book most and my favorite part is when Atreyu and Ygramul hear Bastian's voice in the Land of the Dead Mountains. Overall I am disappointed that this often gets labeled as a children's fantasy book, because it can be read on a level that only critical thinking adults can understand.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
jessica s
I absolutely fell in love with this book the first time I read it and I've read it several times since. It is one of the best imaginary childrens books ever written. It really does give you an escape and it involves you in the book as much as it involves Bastian. I've read it to my brothers and sisters a couple of times as well and it is the perfect book to read to children. I would strongly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a cozy escape to a land full of magic and wonderful things.
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
janki
Michael Ende clearly had a wonderful imagination. His book is rich in images and imaginary beings. This book gave me a buffet of possible characters for stories to tell my daughters. However, Ende never really does much with his characters. Even the protagonist, a young boy who undergoes a tranformation from his journeys, seems a little one dimensional. This may be a problem of the translation, but since I don't read German, I will never know. I would suggest reading Ende's "Momo" instead.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
kelly mantoan
I just finished this book, and the end of it gave me chills up and down my spine! The plot is everything I look for in a story, and I recommmend it for people of all ages. Although I just finished it 5 minutes ago, I am inclined to pick it up and start reading it all over again! The author uses such detail on things that I can picture them perfectly in my mind. I hope you get the chance to read this book.
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
mackenzie tennison
The first half was great. The second half was horrendous. Bastian turns into a jerk and the author tries too hard with some situations and even some characer names. Read it halfway through until Basian gets o Fantastica and then put it back on the shelf.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
geoff
I have never read, nor even heard of a book like The Neverending Story. Not only does it have a great plot, that is both easy easy enough for kids and complicated enough for adults, it is also the only book I've read where you, the reader, are a part of the story. You have to read it to understand! This is not a simple children's fairy tale, it is a book for everyone to cherish together. You'll love it, I gurantee it! The only bad thing about it is that, unlike the title, it has an ending...
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
liz barber
This book will absolutely take you to Fantastica. If you don't begin to see the worl we live in as a different place, you didn't read very hard. Not just young kids should read it. I think adults should read it more than kids. The greatest challenge in this life is to see it for more than meets the eye. This book will help you and anyone else who reads it to dream, hope, and explore.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
stevie el
I don't read much, because i have a very short attention span, and i often lose interest midway, but the Never Ending Story is a book you can't put down. I kindof feel disadvantaged because i saw the movie first. If you haven't read the Never Ending Story and you have a choice read the book before you see the movie, because even though the movie is a classic, you should have a chance to use your imagination first. This book is rad, if it were a person I would marry it !!!!
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
marie eve
ok I admit i didn't think its was gonna be verry good. I mean I loved he movie but i wasn't in to books or that kind of thing when i got but once i started reading it I couldn't stop. It filled my heart with every thing a book should. Now i can barly watch the movie cause all i think of is thats not how it was in the book. But I loved the book and i think if you like a good story or you love the Lord Of The Rings books you should pic this one up.
(...)
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
christopher huber
I LOVE WATCHING THE VIDEO OF THE NEVERENDING STORY, I HAVE GIVEN THE EMPRESS OF FANTASIA A NEW NAME SO HERE IT IS, WAIT FOR IT.
F------A------N------T------A------S-------I-------A. FANTASIA.
I LOVE READING THE STORY BUT MY ONLY WISH WOULD BE TO THE HARDBACK COPY OF THE NEVERENDING STORY. I HAVE GOT FOUR WISHES.
(1). I, LEE LUCKHAM WOULD LOVE TO MEET FANTASIA (EMPRESS OF FANTASIA).
(2). I, LEE LUCKHAM WILL SAVE FANTASIA & HER WORLD FANTASIA.
(3). FOR SIEEDA TO HAVE A HEART.
(4). FOR GOMORG TO HAVE A HEART.
I WOULD RECOMMEND ANYONE TO BUY THE VIDEO'S THE BOOK & THE SOUNDTRACK OF THE NEVERENDING STORY.
... TAKE CARE. YOURS TRULY MR LEE LUCKHAM.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
minnie
This wonderful book is a very deep story, full of wise lessons about courage, friendship, and love for both the reader and Bastian. This book shows that hope is a gift in life. It shares the same lessons about life and hope like the play The Raisin in the Sun. That without hope or goals, life would be a repeating circle. LIfe should be a straight neverending line, full of mystery and dreams for everyone.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
laura zbinden
Just as bastian was reading Atryus story, and living the story it was easy to find yourself doing the same things that Bastian was doing. I f elt like I was really there and at times I was even wanting to see the childlike empress with Bastian. I also longed to be in fantasia, even now. This book is excellent and I would read it over and over if I could. The imagry is a work of heart and I tip my hat to the writer.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
shellah
This book invokes alot of nostalgia, purely for being just as good as the movie, and letting you recall that experience more intimately, through reading. The hardcover edition I read was extra delightful as 'real world' references wre printed in purple, while Fantasia occurences are in green.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
heather young
If you like fantasy and want to be taken away into a journey filled with strange and characters, buy this book and you won't want to put it down. The first movie was good, the book is 10 times better. There is just so much content that is not possible to put in film. If you liked the movie you will be glad you got Ende's original work.
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
kaajal shah
This book is alot longer than the beloved movie version, but fantastic nonetheless.

I was disappointed when my faovrite scenes weren't in the book:

"Atreyu, why are you so sad?"

(sobbing) "I've failed you, Empress!"

(she smiles) "No . . . you haven't."

Yeah, I'm a nerd and I love the end of the movie. But let's not toss aside the book. It's wonderful because not only does all the cool stuff in the movie happen, but once sebastian has saved Fantasia, he gets to have his own written adventures in the imagined world.

I can't remember, but I believe there was a battle with a witch and her giants, an archy contest, and much more, before Sebastian finally learns what he came to Fantasia to learn and is sent home to his father -- who awakens from the grief of lossing his wife and remembers his son.

If you love fantasy and adventure, check this book out, even if you don't buy it right away.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
ceage
I thought this book was well written. I couldn't put this book down for it made you realize so many things. the author made himself into a character, I thought. I read this book because it flowed with a steady pace, but never dull enough for me to put down. this is one author I would like to meet. I highly recommend this book.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
septi septi
This book is so good that I could not put it down. I read non-stop because I just couldn't put it down. Since the related books are not yet in English, one day I will may try to write a continuation of this book for my own enjoyment, but that's another story and will be told at another time...........
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
aleida
The Neverending Story is so beautifully descriptive. It is a vivid tale of philosophical fantasy, as enchanting as an adult as it was as a child...I will read this to my daughter with delight and would recommend it to anyone with imagination.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
kaycee roberts
This book is absolutely amazing from the beginning to the end. I can't describe how much I love and cherish this book. There were times where I cried while reading this book. However, towards the end of the book it does get kind of long-winded. But the end of the book made up for that. If you love adventure, you will love this book
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
shanti krishnamurty
If you rate Harry Potter 10, then The Neverending Story is 1,000!
I recommend this book not only to young people but also to all business men and women. Read this book, and think about what you've been doing "there" once again.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
chryssa
This is definetley the best book I have ever read in my life. The magic of mystery and wonder that you lose as you grow older are immediatley brought back into play the minute you flip to the first page. A story to share with your children or keep to yourself - either way you will never forget the feeling this wonderful tale leaves you with.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
amanda noble
I was given a copy of this book when the first movie came out. I was enthralled. I have read this book hundreds of times, for truly, when you read a book more than once...it changes every time. My copy was lost in a fire a few years back and I'm now replacing it...for I've found I can't live without it.
★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
sarah carp
This is a wonderful story that draws you into it just like it did Bastian. It's a must read for adults as well as children. I was looking for the same printing of the book I had found in a local library in the 1980's which was larger and printed in different color inks. Even though this edition of the book is like a hardbound paperback, the story is just as good.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
collett michelle
I started reading at a very young age. I loved fantasty books, and this one was in a closet somewhere. I found it, thought it looks neato, and whoa. It was my favorite then, and still my favorite now. The adventures that go on are really catching. I couldn't put the book down because I always wanted to find out what happened next. And something always did
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
erinlynn
Die Unendliche Geschichte (The Neverending Story) is the best book ever written and I cherish my two copies as holy relics.
As a child I read the translated version, but now I have also read the German original and it is so much better than the translation. I urge everyone who can't read German to go learn it. The book is definitely worth it.
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