Fogfinger rules Venice. His Fog Squad and spies are everywhere. The Venetians fear him and obey him.
Every year one of their children is lost in a grisly Lambing ceremony. The child must climb the bell tower and let the Fate in the Box decide their destiny. Most end their days in the jaws of the primeval Crocodile that lurks in the lagoon. Or so Fogfinger tells them. But a chance meeting by a green apricot tree between Amneris and Tockle may be the beginning of the end for Fogfinger.
Silk and sewing, a magical glass kaleidoscope, mermaids and misunderstood Sea-Saurs, talking statues and winged cats, blue glass sea-horses, a spoiled rich girl and a secret society are just some of the ingredients in Michelle Lovric's exquisitely imagined and superbly plotted fourth fantasy set in Venice.
Michelle Lovric divides her time between a flat on the Thames and Venice. She has published three novels for adults, of which THE REMEDY was longlisted for the Orange Prize for Fiction. She combines her fiction work with editing, designing and producing literary anthologies including her own translations of Latin and Italian poetry. Her book 'Love Letters' was a New York Times best-seller. She maintains large databases of text and visual material on memoirs, love poems and letters, female and male wit, slang/cursing/archaic words and esoteric medical matters.
Her children's books can be found at http://www.michellelovric.com/children/chindex.htm
I think this book deserves five out of five stars ... I was swept away into its magical adventures.
Venice itself is so well portrayed that it becomes a character in its
own right. Its narrow streets, its murky canals and dark, secret towers
are the setting for an astonishing world of witches, hags, mermaids and
magicians. Tea towels become means of transport, ordinary household
ingredients are combined into potions, and a small boy is allowed to
stand up in court and argue for the preservation of the city. The book
is an exciting, amusing and enchanting read.
For those who love action-packed fantasy, this is a must ... a magical adventure story.
I couldn't put this book down. I enjoyed it immensley, especially the ending ... I found this funny, filled with action and informative. Overall I give this book five stars out of five. Read it!
WE LOVE THIS BOOK - Mia Quraishi Nash, aged 10
This is an exciting tale of courage and friendship and love for your family.
Venice is conjured up in all her shabby glory ... But the story isn't just about setting. There is an action packed plot, with wonderful characters, fantastical beasts, and a deliciously wry, dry sense of humour threading all the way through. And there are mischief and mayhem, horror and gore, fun and games. I don't think I've enjoyed reading something so much for ages.
Michelle Lovric has once again created a rollicking adventure full of history, awesome imagination and fantastic characters of all sorts.
THE DIARY OF A BOOK WORM
This fantastical tale not only offers a richly detailed historical view of Venice, but also provides a vividly imaginative take on the city ... Imbued with magic, mystery and a rip-roaring plot, this book is a gripping read for older children, with lyrical and compelling prose, and a depiction of a fantasy Venice that is both evocative and beautiful.
It's an action-packed, totally enchanting read for children and adults alike.
MADHOUSE FAMILY REVIEWS
a story ... that will enchant you from first page to the last. Add this to Michelle's solid use of prose, cracking dialogue and a lead character that the readers will want to embark on their adventure with and it's a story that was a pure joy to read. Finally add to this a sense of whimsy, and enchanting story overall and a whole host of supporting cast members that will make this a hard tale to forget. Great stuff.
TATTY'S TREASURE CHEST / FALCATA TIMES
I liked reading this book because it's set in a different time and place. I would definitely recommend this book for 10 - 14 year olds, and am now keen to read other books by the same author.
KIDAROUND - Bethany Hammond, aged 12
Brilliant fun! A lively fantasy adventure for 8+. I enjoyed this book a lot. Reading it, I was enveloped in a cocoon on magic, taking me to a nineteenth century Venice where magic openly exists ... a classic children's fantasy
THOUGHTS FROM THE HEARTHFIRE
The writing is beautiful and descriptive allowing you to sample life in Venice just by turning the page. The imagery is stunning and I found myself desperately wanting to visit Venice, but with Michelle as my tour guide. With each description of Venice, you can tell how much the author loves the city; her words breathe out enthusiasm and affection ... The plot had me hooked from the first page ... Michelle Lovric has created an enchanting novel that has left me wanting more.
...intelligently written: beautiful prose, witty dialogue, plus enough gore and gruesome Venetian history to satisfy modern children.
I want to call Michelle's books a guilty pleasure, but I think that would be doing them a gross disservice as it implies that I shouldn't really be loving them as much as I do. Perhaps I should replace the word 'guilty' for 'the ultimate story-lover's', for that is what they are to me ...
Michelle uses her rich prose to weave a luxurious tapestry of a fairytale, populated with colourful characters, the dialogue between whom is another stand out feature of the story.
THE BOOK ZONE FOR BOYS
There's brilliant magic throughout this book that made me
constantly wonder what was going to happen next ... Magic is interwoven through the pages in such a way that
it's entirely natural but also wonderfully surprising too ... You really couldn't ask for more from a book. I
can't recommend this book highly enough. I think it would appeal as
much to boys as well as girls as it has plenty of gore alongside the
magical to keep everyone happy.
MY FAVOURITE BOOKS