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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just brilliant!
In trying to articulate my excitement for wonder that is The Screaming Staircase, I was going to write my shortest ever review and leave it at that, because it summarises the book so well: freaking brilliant. (Well, freaky and brilliant, really).

Then I thought it might help to elaborate. My expectations were set extremely high when I first heard about this...
Published 7 months ago by Daphne (Winged Reviews)

versus
1 of 22 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars You can buy a new hardback cheaper than the kindle!
Publishers, your pricing policy is an absolute DISGRACE!

I can buy a new hardback of this book delivered to my door for over 50p cheaper than an almost cost free kindle file. As your price pricing of e books has increased my buying has decreased. I spend less actual 's now than I did 10yrs ago as I WILL NOT PAY THIS AMOUNT for something with no intrinsic...
Published 5 months ago by Stevehobfg


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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just brilliant!, 29 Aug 2013
This review is from: Lockwood & Co: The Screaming Staircase (Lockwood & Co 1) (Hardcover)
In trying to articulate my excitement for wonder that is The Screaming Staircase, I was going to write my shortest ever review and leave it at that, because it summarises the book so well: freaking brilliant. (Well, freaky and brilliant, really).

Then I thought it might help to elaborate. My expectations were set extremely high when I first heard about this book. It ticked all the right boxes for me--great author, alternative London setting, a cavalier hero, smart female narrator. Plus, actually having Jonathan Stroud there demonstrating how to fight ghosts with a rapier, salt, chains and a teapot was pretty perfect.

In this version of England, there is a Problem--ghosts are everywhere and their touch can kill. You can feel them, but you eventually can't see them. As people grow older, their ability to see ghosts fades away. Enter Lockwood & Co., a small agency founded by teenager Anthony Lockwood to help those with a Visitor problem. Unlike the big corporations with legacy adults running the show, Lockwood & Co. is solely run by our three young protagonists.

Our narrator is Lucy Carlyle, a trainee who possesses superior ghost `empathy'. She moved down to London due to an incident where she used to work and after countless applications (at other firms), ends up as the newest employee of Lockwood & Co. As luck would have it, one Lucy and Lockwood's cases...goes up in smoke, which leads to the little company owing a lot of money and having to risk all by taking on a huge case potentially out of their depths.

This book had some seriously chilling moments. These are not friendly ghosts Lockwood & Co. deal with--they are vengeful, dark spirits that cause extreme terror and harm. When our heroes eventually face the titular screaming staircase, I was truly frightened, not to mention a certain encounter with a floating head (yes, I am a scaredy cat, but just wait until you read it).

That said, the book's tone is generally light (yes, it's light and scary, I don't know how Stroud manages this brilliance). The banter between Lockwood, Lucy and the third member of the trio, the cynical researcher George Cubbins is extremely fun to read, especially as they live together and have to get used to each other's odd habits. I love the humorous understatements in the face of true danger, something I've come to know and love from Stroud's writing. Of course, there are the required tea and biscuit breaks, which adds to the British charm.

My only gripe about reading this book early is that I now have to wait even longer for the sequel. I'm excited to see the world-building get even deeper, learn more about Lucy's abilities and discover the cause of the true mystery behind the Problem. Recommended for absolutely everyone, kids and adults alike will be enthralled by it.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Spell-binding and wonderful., 31 Aug 2013
This review is from: Lockwood & Co: The Screaming Staircase (Lockwood & Co 1) (Hardcover)
Let me begin by saying that this isn't really a review. However, since it's an Amazon requirement to write something in order to leave your rating I'll go ahead and give you all a little something that I hope will help in convincing you to read this book.

Jonathan Stroud has created one of the most believable worlds, brimming with it's own rules and deadly threats, since that of the Harry Potter world of Witchcraft and Wizardry. As well as the world, the characters are an absolute delight to get to know and have a wonderful chemistry together with their interactions often being laugh out loud funny.

The Screaming Staircase is not only one the best children's book I've read this year, it is the best book of any kind I have read this year. It's gripping, tense, genuinely creepy and has set the foundations so solidly that I can't wait for the next book in the series. Superb stuff.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The start of a great series, 23 Sep 2013
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Brida "izumi" (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Lockwood & Co: The Screaming Staircase (Lockwood & Co 1) (Hardcover)
Jonathan Stroud is a great writer. Although his books are aimed at young adults, readers of any age should be able to find much to enjoy from his work. THE SCREAMING STAIRCASE is the first book in his new series, Lockwood & Co.

Stroud's new series is set in a time when there is a real problem with ghosts. Because of this, agencies have been set up to tackle the problem. Lockwood & Co is one such agency. Our narrator, Lucy, is a young girl who has recently left a rival agency. A job she was on did not go well, so she feels she has to redeem herself in her new job. Lockwood & Co is a small agency; only three make up the team. In various ways, they all seem to think that they have a lot to prove, both as a team with no adults involved, but also as individuals. Each character is expertly drawn; they all have positives and negatives and features of their personality which makes them all unique. There is also the suggestion of each character's backstory too, making them feel more real.

I won't go into any more of the story as I don't want to ruin this brilliant book for anyone who decides to read this for themselves. As the first in a series, THE SCREAMING STAIRCASE has a fair bit of foundation laying, but this does not detract from the main story. Stroud has done a marvellous job at getting the balance for this novel just right. The story is scary, funny, intelligent and engrossing. Having finished this, I am now eager to read the next instalment.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just a great read, 6 Feb 2014
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Sussman "Sussman" (London CA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Lockwood & Co: The Screaming Staircase (Lockwood & Co 1) (Hardcover)
If you have read any of Jonathan Stroud’s other works such as the books in the Bartimaeus Sequence you know you are onto a winner. If you are new to his work then you’ll find in this offering that there is Ghost hunting, Ghosts that kill, murder and mayhem. From the get go the book is great reader, and once again the Mr Stroud’s abilities to generate some quirky but always well rounded and interesting characters is amazing. Really what is there not like about this book? In short this very good story telling and please do not pigeon hole yourself over which age group may read it, whether you in your teens or your sixties this book covers all.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great stuff!, 3 Nov 2013
A very enjoyable read, suitably chilling and creepy without gore, excellent story-telling (although I did guess one of the plot lines) and interesting setting (England, except you don't really know what year it is).

I liked the ending despite the fact that I was reminded of the line from the Scooby Doo cartoons "... and I would have gotten away with it if it hadn't been for those pesky kids!"

Look forward to reading more in the series
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dark, witty and ghostly, 16 Oct 2013
By 
Cheryl M-M (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
You know they say that most real bookworms start reading at a young age and they tend to end up devouring books. (My bad, that description fits me perfectly) They also tend to remember certain books that started their path into specific genres or remain vivid in their memories for decades.
I think this might be one of those books that imprints a taste for a certain type of genre on young readers. It is witty, slightly dark and doesn't patronize the younger readers intellect or understanding. Stroud has fun with the characters and still manages to keep them at a level that the reader can relate to.
It is my first Stroud, but it certainly won't be my last.
The book is well-written with flamboyant characters and Stroud sets the mood for a suspenseful read.
It is an interesting mixture of horror, fantasy, mystery with wisps of paranormal. The characters are funny without being ridiculous and smart without sounding overbearing, which is of the utmost importance in a book aimed at 11+ readers.
After reading this I bought the Audiobook because I wanted to know how the story would sound as a narrated story. Definitely worth adding to the collection I share with my children.
I received a copy of this book via Netgalley.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Almost perfect., 15 Oct 2013
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As usual, Stroud delivers an excellent book. It is almost perfect and I am sure he will not disappoint when the rest of this series comes out.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars good old-fashioned fun, 20 Sep 2013
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hugh (Ireland) - See all my reviews
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A great old style adventure with classic scary ghosts a bit in the style of m r james. Refreshing to have a book without any underlying message or moral, just great character interaction and and humour.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, 8 Sep 2013
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This review is from: Lockwood & Co: The Screaming Staircase (Lockwood & Co 1) (Hardcover)
Only quarter of the way through this but i love it so much. Wether it was the book on its own or being read with creepy soundtrack in the background it managed to scare me and can't wait to read more! Also the cover art is wonderful
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely loved this, 7 Sep 2013
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As an avid fan of the Bartimaeus books I was looking forward to another good sequence from Jonathan. I'm happy to report that I was not disappointed! Mr Stroud does atmosphere superbly. It's now a long agonising wait for the next instalment. I don't do plot synopsis or spoilers, so just buy and enjoy!
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Lockwood & Co: The Screaming Staircase (Lockwood & Co 1)
Lockwood & Co: The Screaming Staircase (Lockwood & Co 1) by Jonathan Stroud (Hardcover - 29 Aug 2013)
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