In the land of Petrossia firm friends Pieter, a mathemagician, and Teresa, a trainee alchemist, hatch a plot to defeat the cruel and fearsome Czar. Unfortunately, their plans lead to catastrophe as the Czar’s only heir, Prince Alexander, is turned into a fluffy kitten. Mayhem and magical adventures ensue as Pieter and Teresa attempt to avoid getting their heads chopped off, deal with a giant cat Prince and outwit the Czar.
Subtitled ‘A furry-tailed fairy tale’, this blend of mystery, adventure, humour and alchemy sees Sam Gayton return to the magical lands visited in previous works The Snow Merchant and Hercufleas with his characteristic inventiveness, brilliant storytelling and imaginative word creation. The author is able to create a compelling fantasy world with a convincing alternative fairy tale tone and many larger than life characters. The story’s heart is the deep friendship between Pieter and Teresa, whose abilities and characters complement each other. The serious themes of standing up to bullying and tyranny and making wise choices are enhanced by the fast-pace, the humour, the inventive language, the links to classic fairy tales and mythology and the accomplished, vivacious narration. This story of alchemy and friendship should appeal to 8+ lovers of magical fantasy written with a light touch.