5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
The Lord of the Flies (Lucifer) meets Oliver Twist........,
This review is from: Black Arts (Hardcover)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)This excellent novel starts in the far, far past with human sacrifice to the demon Lud and also ends there. You need to know this to know a bit about the story if you are thinking of buying the book. The main part of the book is set in Elizabethan times 1592.
Young Jack is about to start his apprenticeship at thieving with the notorious Sharkwell. His Mother prepares him for what to do and so off he goes to meet his new Master and 'Family' and to carry out his 'testing'. He passes and is soon on the streets cutting purses from all and sundry. His downfall is when he cuts the purse off a Puritan Minister although he doesn't know that at the time. He takes his loot to Sharkwell and is then given his due, part of which is an old pipe for his Ma. He goes home happy to tell his Mother how his testing went but when he tries to blow the pipe he finds it is blocked with something so with much pogling around with the tools of his trade he manages to pop out an odd substance which promtply flies into his eye. This unknown stuff nearly drives him mad with pain and when he finally opens his eye he finds that everything he looks at is different like he is seeing through things. His hand also become bright red like those of all the so called Preachers. He is so busy trying to irrigate his eye that he doesn't notice until too late that he has been followed home by the leader of the sect, the odious Webb. Webb has killed his Mother and is now trying to kill him. Help comes from a strange quarter an 'Intelligencer' or spy as we would know them as. A fight ensues with Webb using an ensorcelled blade. Everywhere Webb goes there are always flies even on his coinage hence my title.
Jack is hellbent on revenge but knows this will break one of Sharkwells many laws so he must bide his time. In the interim he continues to rob and thieve and is even teamed up with Sharkwells Grandaughter, Beth as a Darksman.
Something is going very wrong in London........a book called the Diabolon is being bought by amateur magicians with catastropic results to themselves and it is not until Jack teams up with Kit (the spy) and Dr. John Dee that an awful truth is realised one that could literally bring down the monarchy and give the Preachers hold of the entire land or even the world. So Jack throws in his lot with Kit and Dee to try and stop 'The Reckoning' from happening.
This is an extremely well thought out book and so readable I could hardly bear to put it down. It is in parts historically interesting because of the 'Lud' connection (Ludgate) and also pretty violent and frightening. It says inside the book 'Black Arts' 'The Books of Pandemonium' so I really hope there is going to be a sequel.