‘A gripping and enticing first paragraph draws the reader in to this fast paced exciting mystery. A full length novel written as a group collaboration of young authors, this was an ambitious task well executed.
The plot races along, maintaining pace especially with particularly effective use of cliff hanging chapter endings, keeping the reader hooked and wanting to read on.
Chapter headings are also effective.
The storyline is brimming with ideas and well imagined to the point that at times it is slightly confusing and the story a little disjointed. For example, it is not obvious to the storyline why Cassie Crow turned into a rat.
Characterisation is often well drawn especially for Tom, the main character, about whom the reader really cares.
Vocabulary is imaginative and varied, plenty of realistic dialogue adds to the variety and pace of the story. However, some phrasing is somewhat strange, e.g. p86 ‘their mouths heading quickly towards the floor’.
Imaginative similes are often effectively used e.g. She stood like an excited dormouse staring up a shiny red berries in a hedge. Others are a little odd, ‘He saw the tree wind itself up like twirling shoelaces on fast forward’. There are some lovely descriptive passages e.g. p27 description of winter and summer.
Imaginative and appropriate illustrations add another dimension to the story. The whole package has the look of a professional production.’ Anne Matthews, SLS Lead Adviser
What did you think of this review? Do you agree with Anne?