Sunday, 8 April 2018

The Empty Grave by Jonathan Stroud

“The ghost’s face had disappeared now; only the skull was showing. Even I had to admit that its death-black sockets and leering toothy grin weren’t entirely reassuring.”

There is only one thing wrong with reading one of Jonathan Stroud’s series, and that is finishing them. The endearing crew of misfits that make up the Lockwood & Co agency will be sorely missed by yours truly. I actually shed a tear at the end of this book that’s aimed squarely at an audience quite a few decades younger than I.

The action is amped up to eleven and menace approaches from both the here and now, and the hereafter. Throw on a spirit cape and enjoy the thrills and spills, perhaps even take a walk on the other side. Our intrepid heroes have some mighty opponents and an unthinkable mystery to solve. Have they locked on to the reason behind “the problem” and what is the deal with the Fittes Agency?

If you love the talking skull as much as I do, if you pine for the day when Lockwood and Lucy might find a happy ending and if you enjoy a thrilling adventure, then look no further – this is it!

I finished this on the train this morning and immediately experienced a sensation of emptiness. My spirit crushed like a bested Type Two Spectre at the thought of never being party again to the conversations of Lucy and the Skull. Fear not blog readers, I will recover.  There are many other books out there for me to read. Nevertheless, Lucy, Lockwood, George and Skull will remain as a happy thought – most likely when I’m reading something tiresome.

5 out of 5 endings can be elating and deflating at the same time.

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