The Map That Breathed

Melanie Gideon

Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)

A mysterious map of another world plunges two friends into the adventure of a lifetime

"Suddenly the map darkened as if someone had dimmed the light.
'Did you see that?' whispered Billy.
A fetid wind came barreling out of the window and sand whipped around in the hole. The two of them watched in astonishment as the map trembled and inhaled.
'It's breathing,' gasped Nora. 'The map is breathing!'"

Nora Sweetkale has a strong feeling that her life is about to change. It starts when she receives a mysterious blank book in the mail. Then she meets Billy, who can make windows that look into other worlds. Through one of these windows they glimpse the lovely island of Sanasaera, where the colorful cats are as big as ponies and the cheerful people love nothing better than a good ear-pulling to clear their heads. Yet in this beautiful place lurks something terrible.

When Nora disappears into this other world, Billy is left to face the evil that has escaped into their own. But he can't do it alone. He must find a way to get Nora back, and quickly, or it may be too late.


Read an Excerpt

The Map That Breathed
Part OneChapter OneNora Sweetkale had always been a well-behaved girl. She made her bed every morning. She was pleasant to grown-ups. She rarely lied, and if she did, it was in order to spare somebody's feelings. She brought home As and Bs on her report card, and she was comfortably smart, which meant she had to study for her tests, but not too hard. She'd never caused her mother much worry. But all that changed when she got the blue book in the mail."Something's come for you," her mother said one afternoon, handing Nora a small brown parcel. Nora gave a little shriek of


Praise for The Map That Breathed

"[T]his will please fantasy fans who enjoy discovering new, well-imagined lands." --Booklist

"A fast-paced fantasy. . . . [R]eaders will be captivated by this book and will long for a sequel." --School Library Journal

"[T]he pages come alive with vivid descriptions. . . .Gideon's first novel for young adults should attract readers who enjoy both the fantasy and the mystery genres." --VOYA

"Top 10 Pick" selection--Girls' Life

Reviews from Goodreads



  • Melanie Gideon

  • Melanie Gideon was born and brought up in Rhode Island and now lives in northern California with her family. This is her first novel for young readers.


Available Formats and Book Details

The Map That Breathed

Melanie Gideon

NYPL Books for the Teen Age
  • e-Book