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Verdigris Deep Hardcover – Unabridged, 4 May 2007

4.6 out of 5 stars 16 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Macmillan Children's Books (4 May 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1405055375
  • ISBN-13: 978-1405055376
  • Product Dimensions: 13.8 x 3 x 21.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 652,335 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Review

'Everyone should read Frances Hardinge. Everyone. Right now.' (Patrick Ness) --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Book Description

From an award-winning author, another breathtakingly original modern classic in the making.

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

By Brida TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 11 Aug. 2007
Format: Hardcover
After reading really good reviews for this book, I decided I had to see if they were justified. Having now just frinished the book, I can happily say that every positive review this book gets is fully deserved.

The story is about 3 children; Ryan, Josh and Chelle. One evening they miss their buss home. Without any money for another fare, they go to extreme lengths, stealing money from an old wishing well. It is then not long afterwards that strange things start happening - Ryan has unusual growths on his hands; Josh seems to make lightbulbs explode whenever he is near; and Chelle cannot stop barrages of words from spilling out of her mouth, even though the words do not belong to her. The Ryan is visited by the Well Witch, a weird lady who has water gushing from her eyes and hides the words she speaks. From a mixture of guesswork and luck, the kids are able to help Ryan in establishing what she was after - she wants them to grant the wishes that they have taken from her well. Sounds simple enough in some ways, but unfortunately they soon learn that wishes are complex things, you never quite know what may be hidden behind the words - after all, the people that made them are complex, with different motives and desires urging them on. Soon, the business of granting wishes becomes more like a curse for the youngsters, but how do they get out of the debt of a Well Witch?

Although I am in my late twenties, I do enjoy literature for young adults and children. This, the first book I have read by Hardinge, was a breath of fresh air. Although there is a magical element it is quite different to what you will have encountered in the favourites such as Harry Potter. The three main characters are well developed - I particularly liked Chelle, who develops as the novel progresses.
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Format: Hardcover
This is a story about dreams and hopes, about trying to do the right thing and how that might not always work out the way you expected. This a darker novel than "Fly by Night", set in the here and now. The world unravels for three teenagers when they miss their bus home and the supernatural begins to impinge.

Hardinge is a consummate wordsmith, her writing contains beautifully observed wry turns of phrase that will strike a chord with adult and teen readers alike. Another innovative, finely crafted book from one of Britain's most talented writers.
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Format: Hardcover
This is the first novel by this author that I have read, but it will certainly not be the last. Oh my gosh is it addictive! I have recommended it to all and sundry. The twists and turns are clever and keep the plot moving forward rather than holding it back.

For all those Harry Potter addicts (like me) who are stuck for something to read after book 7, I suggest you start with Verdigris Deep and move on from there. Sheer brilliance.
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Format: Paperback
Ryan, Josh and Chelle are friends who slip off into a nearby town for an illict picnic. But when they stay for an extra milkshake they miss their return bus and don't have enough money to get home. Josh comes up with the idea of taking coins from an abandoned wishing well to cover the fare. Although they get home okay, weird things start to happen. Ryan develops a series of bumps on his knuckles that look like eyeballs and he sees things that no one else can see. Chelle is compelled to recite the words going through the mind of other people. Light bulbs begin to explode around Josh.

Then the well witch appears - a strange and powerful creature determined to punish the children who stole from her. She demands that they work for her by granting the wishes of the people who threw in the coins. This is no straightforward task though because the wishes have been rotting in the well for a long time and the friends discover that they're part of the well witch's twisted world - a world that is threatening to claim the children for itself.

This is a weird, gripping and macabre story with plenty of depth and twists and turns to keep the pages turning.

The story is told through Ryan's eyes and while he's likeable character he's also flawed - specifically he realises that his intelligence makes him a target and relies on Josh to protect him from school bullies, which makes him slow to wake up to Josh's faults. In fact the relationship between all three children is very believable - the boys are closer to each other than to Chelle and she is aware of her status but grateful to have people to hang out with.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The secret author Frances Hardinge has hit it again. How is this woman who’s written these astounding Weird books for kids(ish) keep going unnoticed? Three children steal coins from a wishing well so they can get home on time. These children are all going through normal coming-of-age problems, but they’re about to get a whole host of others. Dark. Disturbing. Terrifying and emotional and gripping. Hardinge’s dizzying imagination unfolds a deep, dark mystery inside the wishing well and inside the wounded heart of a child. The sort of book you want to read late with a torch under the covers.
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