Last year I was lucky enough to review Abi Elphinstone's debut book, The Dreamsnatcher. Well she's only gone and released a new novel, The Shadow Keeper and I was keen to see whether it was as magical as her first efforts.
Moll Pecksniff and her friends are living as outlaws in a secret cave by the sea., desperate to stay hidden from the Shadowmasks. But further along the coast lies the Amulet of Truth, the only thing powerful enough to force the Shadowmasks back and contain their dark magic. So together with Gryff, the wildcat that's always by her side, and her best friends Alfie and Sid, Moll must sneak past smugglers, outwit mer creatures and crack secret codes to save the Old Magic.
This is the second installment to the trilogy and boy does it impress. We start in the eerie Crooked Cave where two bad characters, Shadmasks named Ashtongue and Darkbite are discussing how Moll managed to defeat Skull and Hemlock. There is immediate talk of old magic, night creatures and curses and already things look set to get more than interesting.
The pace of this book is fast and right from the get go there is plenty of action to get you turning the pages. I for one couldn't put the book down, I had it finished in less than 4 hours, a truly addictive read. It turned out to be somewhat of a race against time for Moll and her friends to find the Amulet of Truth which we find out contains her mothers soul.
A lot of mysterious goings on occur as we progress through the book, strange figures wrapped in cloaks, witch doctors down by the sea, but what I like in this book is that throughout all of these weird events Moll and her friends continue to work as a team and I think we see this bond strengthen as the story continues. And let me say it was so good to have the same characters featured, they have a brilliant dynamic between them.
As with the last book there are a lot of suspense filled moments that have you on the edge of your seat (figuratively speaking) and it was wonderful to see that Abi's style of writing hadn't changed at all, the world she so cleverly created in the first book only came to life more in this second telling. Emotions run high and their is a lot of sadness mixed in with some rather heartfelt moments too.
The Shadow Keeper is a magical adventure book like no other. It is series that I think fans of books such as Harry Potter will love. A superb read for both children and adults and I for one am looking forward to reading the final installment, lets hope the Shadowmasks can be forced back for good!