The 13th Reality

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The 13th Reality
Author James Dashner
Cover artist John Picacio
Country America
Language English
Series The 13th Reality
Genre Young adult science fiction
Publisher Shadow Mountain

The 13th Reality is a young adult science fiction book series by American writer James Dashner. The first book in the series (The Journal of Curious Letters) was published in early 2008 by Shadow Mountain Publishing. The second book was released on May 1, 2009 and was titled The Hunt for Dark Infinity, and book three was released April 6, 2010. It was titled The Blade of Shattered Hope. The fourth book (The Void of Mist and Thunder) was released as an eBook on July 10, 2012,[citation needed] and was released as a hardcover in September 2012.[1] A 2096-page boxed set was issued by Aladdin Paperbacks in 2013.[1]

Plot summary[edit]

Atticus "Tick" Higginbottom is your average 13-year-old, until he receives a mysterious letter from Alaska, signed 'M.G'. This marks the beginning of a deadly and crazy adventure where Tick is reintroduced to the world like he never knew it. Accompanied by new friends while trying to evade frightful enemies, he sets off on a life-threatening journey through the Realities—alternate worlds created every time a choice is made—to discover secrets and solve missions.


  • Atticus 'Tick' Higginbottom — The 13-year-old main protagonist of the series who lives in Deer Creek, Washington, of Reality Prime. He is introduced to the Realities after being recruited by Master George through a series of curious letters and clues, becoming a fully-fledged Realitant.
  • Master George (M.G.) — The old, short, quirky leader of the Realitants.
  • Mistress Jane — The main antagonist of the series. Once a Realitant, she betrayed her kind after getting her hands on the mutated power of the 13th Reality, now seeking to create a Utopia Reality. Her favourite colour is yellow and she is bald.
  • Mothball' — A Realitant from the 5th Reality, where everyone is tall and speaks with a thick British accent. She was given her strange name when Bugaboo soldiers were attacking her family.
  • Rutger — A Realitant from the 11th Reality and Mothball's best friend. He is short and fat, like everyone else in the 11th Reality.
  • Sofia Pacini — Sofia is a 12-year-old girl from a rich Italian family known for their spaghetti. She is recruited to the Realitants the same way as Tick, by letters. Although sometimes snappy and mean, she is known for her brains and for being tough as nails.
  • Paul Rogers — Paul is a 14-year-old boy from Florida. Like Tick and Sofia, he was recruited by Master George's letters. He can be a little full of himself, and his love for cracking jokes causes him to frequently but heads with Sofia.
  • Sato — An orphaned boy from Japan whose parents used to be Realitants until they died from Mistress Jane's power. Because Master George was there at the scene Sato became reluctant to him, which slowly extended to everyone.
  • Edgar Higginbottom — Tick's outgoing father who loves to eat. He is the first to know about Tick receiving the letters and trusts his son unconditionally.
  • Lorena Higginbottom — Tick's mother, who is later revealed to be a Realitant as well.
  • Kayla Higginbottom — Tick's younger sister who is only 4-years-old. She loves to burn objects in the fireplace and play tea party.
  • Lisa Higginbottom — Tick's 15-years-old older sister. She plays horribly on the piano and likes to talk on the phone.
  • Reginald Chu — Tick's science teacher in Reality Prime. His alterant (the alternate version of someone in different realities) is the genius owner of Chu Industries in the 4th Reality, famed for his business skills and ruthlessness.
  • Windasill — Mothball's mother.
  • Tollaseat — Mothball's father.
  • Frazier Gunn — Mistress Jane's loyal servant.
  • Annika — A spy for the Realitants until she was found out by Frazier and killed by Mistress Jane's pets, the fangen.


Kirkus Reviews labeled The Journal of Curious Letters science fiction for ages 10–12 and called it "the start of a series that will capture the imagination of young and old alike. ... though there are chunks of text that are overwritten, the telling is generally laced with a strong sense of humor and a sure hand at plot; the author is plainly in tune with today's fan base."[2] One year later, Kirkus labeled The Hunt for Dark Infinity fantasy for ages 10 and up. The story features the "next assignment" for "the trio" Tick, Paul, and Sofia. "Readers will be as puzzled as the characters, who tumble from one complex and outrageous situation to the next, rescued from each at the last minute—sometimes with no explanation. But it all holds together remarkably well, encouraging suspension of disbelief to make way for glorious flights of imagination."[3] Kirkus credited illustrator Bryan Beus but did not comment on his contribution.[3] Evidently it did not cover the third or fourth volume at all.[4]


The Journal of Curious Letters
Author James Dashner
Illustrator Bryan Beus
Cover artist Brayn Beus
Country United States
Language English
Series The 13th Reality
Publisher Shadow Mountain Publishing
Publication date
Pages 417
ISBN 978-1-59038-831-0
OCLC 179801453
Followed by The Hunt for Dark Infinity

The Journal of Curious Letters[edit]

The Journal of Curious Letters was published in 2008 novel.


Atticus Higginbottom, a.k.a. Tick, is an average thirteen-year-old boy until the day a strange letter arrives in his mailbox. Postmarked from Alaska and cryptically signed with the initials "M.G.," the letter informs Tick that dangerous—perhaps even deadly—events have been set in motion that could result in the destruction of reality itself. M.G. promises to send Tick twelve riddles that will reveal on a certain day, a certain time, and a certain place, something extraordinary will happen!

The Hunt for Dark Infinity
Author James Dashner
Illustrator Bryan Beus
Cover artist Brayn Beus
Country United States
Language English
Series The 13th Reality
Publisher Shadow Mountain Publishing
Publication date
Pages 433
ISBN 978-1-60641-034-9
Preceded by The Journal of Curious Letters
Followed by The Blade of Shattered Hope

The Hunt for Dark Infinity[edit]

The Hunt for Dark Infinity was published in 2009.


Reginald Chu, the alterant of Tick's science teacher has created a powerful and deadly new invention called 'Dark Infinity' and it's sending the Reality's people off the edge of sanity. Due to Tick's uncanny talent for controlling The Chi'Karda, Chu wants either Tick or Mistress Jane to help control the power of the Dark Infinity and help him control The Realities, but Master George won't have any of that. Tick is forced to team up with Mistress Jane in an all out attempt to stop Chu and his evil reign over the 4th Reality. Join Tick and his friends as they travel through the Realities, completing various riddles made by Chu to see if Tick is worthy enough to kill Mistress Jane and help Chu control everything.

Other books[edit]

  • Dashner, James (2010). The Blade of Shattered Hope. Salt Lake City: ShadowMountain. ISBN 1-60641-239-6. 
  • Dashner, James (2012). The Void of Mist and Thunder. Salt Lake City: ShadowMountain. ISBN 1-60908-055-6. 


  1. ^ a b "The 13th Reality – Series Bibliography". Internet Speculative Fiction Database ( Retrieved 2014-07-27. Select a title to see its linked publication history and general information. Select a particular edition (title) for more data at that level, such as a front cover image or linked contents.
  2. ^ "THE JOURNAL OF CURIOUS LETTERS: The 13th Reality, Volume 1". Kirkus Reviews. 76 (3): 145. February 1, 2008. ISSN 0042-6598. Retrieved 2014-07-27. 
  3. ^ a b "THE 13TH REALITY: Book 2: The Hunt for Dark Infinity". Kirkus. February 1, 2009. Retrieved 2014-07-27.
  4. ^ Search Results: "james dashner". Kirkus. Retrieved 2014-07-27.

External links[edit]