Top critical review
Good for older children and better than Tiger Wars
on 28 October 2013
Firstly, I wrote a review of Tiger Wars and I think this is a definite improvement although there are still some of the same issues.
My (now) 8 year old son chose this as he enjoyed the story of Tiger Wars. I read it aloud to him at bedtime, although he's probably capable of reading it independently if he wanted to. I would say that it is aimed at an older child than you might expect to be a Deadly 60 fan.
Like Tiger Wars it follows the adventures of Sinter and Saker and highlights some real life environmental issues; this time in the forests of Borneo. The story is pacey and exciting, although there is more of a focus on personal relationships than in Tiger Wars. There is quite a distressing scene, with Sinter, early in the book which wasn't resolved until later and this could upset a sensitive or younger child. Ghosts of the Forest is clearly setting the scene for future books in the series and introduces some new and interesting characters.
Although there are some torturous mixed metaphors, the quality of writing is an improvement from Tiger Wars, with much less technical language. It seems Steve Backshall has benefitted from a good editor and he has at least halved the number of adjectives. The plot itself, however, feels a little rushed at the end with some characters left undeveloped and the all-powerful clan make some glaringly convenient mistakes.