Originally, when this tale landed, the first thing I noted was that this was a second book in the series. Generally, I'm quite loathed to start a tale part way through as you generally have missed a lot of the world building along with the opportunity to get to know the principle protagonist in the way that other readers have. So at a bit of a loss as to what to do I promised myself that I'd read the first 50 pages and see where it took me. If I didn't like it, I'd put it down and leave it until I obtained the first book (if there was promise) or forever condemn it to purgatory on my own Hell Shelf (jokingly called so as the lowest levels are reserved for books that should never see the light of day again) if I really didn't rate it.
What unfurled really demonstrated that I have to now get the original. Not that you can't read this tale without having enjoyed the first instalment, you can, but because the world building, along with the protagonist and the myriad of other cast members is so beautifully sculpted you just can't help to fall in love with all of them. Special note here to Mr Numps who's a firm personal favourite whilst the stories villains also deserve note, in this case the Master of Clerks whose personal goals are well performed chess moves worthy of any true villain. It's wonderfully constructed. It's a cracking story but above all it's world building at its best demonstrating a quality that makes this an absolute must read. It might appear a bit thick for the normal YA out there but at the end of the day you really don't notice it especially with all the additional goodies contained in the appendices.
A child's story which can captivate any adult fan of the twisted and maccarbe. An impressive world full of wild monsters and even wilder characters. If you enjoyed the first book you won't be let down by the second outing of the boy with a girls name.
loved the characters, the in depth descriptions in it, the illustrations were fabulous. I cannot wait for book 4, have read all of them so far and think rossamund is a lovely little character. The book is full of surprises!keeps me interested all the way through, first books ive ever read by this author and have to say im very impressed, beats harry potter in my opinion - no offence to harry potter fans but much more interesting in my opinion.
These books are pure genius. I just received my British copy of this book but I already have the US copy as well as the advanced reading copy. I also have multiple copies of the first book. If you have not read these, PLEASE get them. They far exceed any expectations, enjoyment or delight I have experienced in anything I've read thus far this 2008. Even though they may be in the teen section or even the childrens' section, don't deny yourself this experience. They are big, beautiful, and absolutely stunningly written and illustrated. Mr. Cornish, I know that I emailed you when the first book came out and your website was rather young and I know that I had extreme compliments for you. I tried to email you today but I couldn't find a link. I can only hope that the Charlotte you acknowledge at the end of your book is ME. Well, let's just say it IS. As many times as I have handled these pages, each time....what a rush. This is truly what it means to experience the magic of the written word. The illustrations (also done by Mr. Cornish, major mind-boggling talent) and design of the book...well, believe me it's worth any 20+ other books you may buy this year.