by Michael Ende

Reviewer Rating:


Momo is an earlier book by Michael Ende, author of The Neverending Story. Published first in German in 1973, Momo is a fantasy novel aimed at teens.

Momo, an illiterate orphaned girl who lives alone at the amphitheater ruins, becomes a kind of sage to the town, offering solutions to civil problems and facilitating elaborate fantasy games with children. The mysterious Men in Grey, however, ruin the fun. Momo and her friends discover that the Men in Grey are stealing time from the townspeople. Fewer and fewer townsfolk participate in leisure, using every possible minute for work and productivity. With help from some time-travling allies, Momo finds a way to defeat the Men in Grey.

Ultimately, the book speaks to the busyness of modern life. Although the language isn't elaborate, the plot takes several chapters to develop. Time travel is interesting but difficult to think about, and Momo is equal parts intriguing and understandable.

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