Ireland, we learn at one point in Derek Landy’s novel, is ‘the Cradle of Magic… a land (which) holds secrets, both magnificent and terrifying’. This, and more significantly its capital city, Dublin, is the domain which serves as setting for the third adventure starring Landy’s skeletal detective and his sidekick Valkyrie, now aged 14. The emphasis is very much on the city’s criminal underworld, populated by a diversity of fearsomely named malefactors – the ‘Diablerie’ – including, among others, Murder Rose, Gruesome Krav, Billy-Ray Sanguine and Jaron Gallow. Their intention, apparently, is to bring back ‘the Faceless Ones’, whose return will ultimately spell the end of our civilisation. Pitted against their machinations is the ingenuity of Skulduggery and his young lippy assistant, resulting in a story which shows no signs of diminishing the inventiveness or self-mockery of its predecessors. Such is the overall and entertainingly animated tone of the proceedings that it would be absurd to take any of this too seriously. But, as the sequence progresses, it is possible to detect a darker note beginning to intrude, the Dublin shenanigans coming to be seen as a microcosm of a more widespread ‘death and madness and mayhem’. Simultaneously, we are becoming aware that characters and their inter-relationships are becoming less predictable. With six novels still to come, the possibilities for further complexities are being cleverly prepared.
http://booksforkeeps.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/bfklogo.png 0 0 Richard Hill http://booksforkeeps.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/bfklogo.png Richard Hill2009-07-01 16:14:292022-12-12 16:16:59Skulduggery Pleasant: The Faceless Ones