The Extraordinary and Unusual Adventures of Horatio Lyle is the first book in the Horatio Lyle series by British author, Catherine Webb. The scene is London, 1864. Horatio Lyle, son of Harry and Milly Lyle, is an enthusiastic inventor and occasional sleuth. Shortly after he catches young pick-pocket and thief, Teresa Hatch leaving the scene of her latest break-in (his house), he is called to the Palace by Lord Lincoln to temporarily resume his position as Special Constable. He is needed to investigate the theft from the Bank of England of, among other valuables, the Fuyun Plate, a Tibetan artefact made by a powerful race of angel-demons. He decides to take Tess along with him, as well as, of course, his faithful and very useful hound, Tate. At the Bank they encounter Master Thomas Edward Elwick, heir to the Third Baron of Elwick; Thomas is keen to be useful in the investigation, and this team of four soon find themselves involved in all sorts of escapades as they try to solve the robbery and find the Fuyun Plate before it falls into the wrong hands. While the details of the character backgrounds are sparse, their dialogue, their resourcefulness and their sense of adventure will certainly appeal to young readers, as will the myriad of inventions (dynamos, flash bombs, tasers, chemical explosives) and the non-stop action (abseiling down buildings, zip-lining, roof-top chases, sliding down bannisters, fights with evil beings wielding crossbows). Webb has fun with character names (Tate and Lyle, Inspector Vellum, Miss Mercy Chaste, the vicar’s daughter, Mr Dew) in this fight between inventive, scientific Londoners and a decidedly malevolent army of a quite different sort of greenie. Young fans will look forward to the second book in the series, The Obsidian Dagger. A fun read.