Wu Chen Recommends: The Neverending Story

I love to read. I love to encourage others to read, as well, and I particularly encourage the reading of fiction. I don’t care if it is a classic (read: “old enough that someone, somewhere, will think you uneducated for not having read it”), or a corner store romance novel: reading a piece of fiction is a brilliant act of exploring worlds, minds and lives not our own. It’s an exercise in empathy and soaring imagination and human connection.

For all these reasons, I recommend Michael Ende’s The Neverending Story. If my anecdotal experience is anything to go by, at this point many of you have sighed and said “I love that movie!”

I say to you all: if you haven’t, go and read the book.

It’s my favourite coming-of-age story, my favourite commentary on the corruption of power and pride, my favourite parable of responsibility and heroism at its most utterly human, and my favourite action adventure.

The movie is good, no doubt about it. But film and the written word are two different mediums: neither one is superior to the other, each has their own strengths and shortcomings.

The movie was heart-warming, thoroughly enjoyable and beautiful.

The book got under my skin and has gnawed at me for 30 years.

It’s an experience I wish upon everyone.