Marcus Sedgwick has branched out with a series of books for younger readers, and the first one is called Flood and Fang, and is out now. The Raven Mysteries (and it’s not every book that has a raven as its protagonist) should appeal to the customers of Lemony Snicket and Philip Ardagh. It certainly appealed to me, although I might not have chosen it in a shop, on account that it looks a little young for me.
Edgar (that’s the raven) is considerably older than me, than most other creatures, in fact, so the story is in good hands. He’s a little vain, but he’s also intelligent and caring and brave. His people, the Otherhands, are a bit strange, rather in the vein of the Addams family.
In Flood and Fang the Otherhand Castle is under threat from, well, a flood, and some fangs. Quite a few fangs, actually. The castle has a mind of its own, which I suppose can come in useful, though not in this book. Maid-eating monsters are always interesting, and luckily the Otherhand family have a few maids to spare.
This is an intelligently written book, with an interesting use of language. Futhork. Gasp. Urk.
Lovely illustrations on every page. And the Otherhand daughter, Solstice, is a beautiful Goth, and very fond of Edgar. So we like her. You will, too.