Wednesday, 3 September 2014

Mr Ripley's Book Review: Wild Boy and the Black Terror - By Rob LLoyd Jones


Welcome to another roller coaster ride following Wild Boy and Clarissa. In this book the case is known as the Black Terror. It is a Sherlock-esq detective novel set in London, but it has a slight twist. Wild boy is not your conventional hero-type character. He is classed as a circus freak due to his hairy appearance, but he soon finds himself running from the circus and his past. Clarissa, his sidekick and troublemaker from the circus, teams up with Wild boy once again, as they dodge the danger and mayhem that they soon find themselves facing once more.

This story is a delight to read - deliciously dark and very compelling. The duo hurtle into danger. They visit the darkest corners of Victorian London from the vilest slums to the grandest of palaces. Transported into a fantastically imagined plot, a poisoner stalks LONDON leaving his victims mad with TERROR and then dead.

Wild boy and Clarissa are the city's last hope in finding the killer as well as the cure for the BLACK TERROR. The darkness slowly creeps into the readers' bones - a merry dance ensues with the possibilities: Who is the killer?  Many options keep the reader guessing right to the very end of the book. The strong element of intrigue and mystery lives in every pore of the page. It certainly keeps the reader on their little tentative toes.

The crisp narrative of this book is equally as good as the first book, so if you enjoyed the first encounter then you will not be disappointed by this one. It firmly places this series as one of my favourites. The book looks and feels great - the period touches by Owen Davey really enhance the look of the book whilst the effective use of typography and colour really burst off the page. These are all great touches and really build up to the start of a very worthy story.

The book had some very surreal moments to fuel the imagination to the darkest levels. The story hurtles forward at a hundred miles an hour. A frenzy of fast-paced action and humour entertains the reader in every chapter. One of my favourite sections of the book involved the task of breaking and stealing a precious stone in Oberstein's showroom. However, as I don't want to reveal the outcome, I will say no more other than it had me gripped . . . . fantasy gold.

The ending did not let this book down- all of the loose ends were tied together and created a thrilling ending. I would definitely recommend this book and series to anyone and everyone. It is an epic triumph - hopefully more adventures and books will come in the future.

Published by Walker Books - July 2014
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