Welcome to a wild world of magical creatures and heroic adventure!
The squabbling goblins that live in the great towers of Clovenstone spend their time fighting and looting. Only clever young Skarper (who happens to be in exile) understands that dark magic created by a vanquished sorcerer is rising again. With the help of a wannabe-hero, a middle-aged princess, and a few bumbling wizards, Skarper must fight to save their world.
Philip Reeve is the bestselling author of the Mortal Engines quartet, which is now a major motion picture, and the award-winning Fever Crumb series. His other books include the highly acclaimed Here Lies Arthur
and No Such Thing As Dragons
. He lives in England with his wife and son. Visit him online at philip-reeve.com.
- The highest of the seven towers of Clovenstone is called the Blackspike. Although
it is dwarfed by the great mass of the Keep behind it, it is still taller than any
tower in the lands of men. From its snow-flecked battlements to the ground at the
crag's foot is a very long drop indeed . . .
And that was bad news for Skarper,
because he had just been catapulted off the top of it.
“Aaaaaaah!” he screamed,
rising up, up, up, pausinga moment, flailing for handholds on the empty air, and
then beginning his long fall. “Aaaaaaaaa . . .” But after the first thousand feet
or so he realized that he wasjust going “ . . . aaaaaaaaaaaa . . .” from force of
habit, so he stopped, and from then on the only sounds were the whooshing of the
cold air past his ears and the occasional cottony rustle as a cloud shot by.
course it's not so much the falling that bothers me, thought Skarper, as the ivied
stones and mean little windows of the Blackspike rushed past him. It's the hitting
the ground that's the trouble . . .
Below him– now that he had got used to the
feeling that the wind was pushing its thumbs into his eyes– he could see plump white
clouds dotting the middle air like sheep. Below them the bleak buttresses of Meneth
Eskern spread out like the fingers of a splayed stone hand, with ruined buildings
clustering between them. Weeds and little trees had rooted themselves in the rotting
roofs and between the flagstones of the silent streets, and as the land sloped downward
toward the Outer Wall, five miles away, the trees grew thicker and thicker, forming
a dense wood, from whose canopy old bastions and outbuildings poked up like lonely
This was Skarper's world, and as he looked down upon it he was interested
to notice several details that Stenoryon's Mappe of All Clovenstone had got wrong.
But not that interested, because the details were rushing toward him at great speed,
and long before he could tell anyone of his discoveries he was going to be splattered
all over them like a careless delivery of raspberry jam.