Release Date: 14/10/10
Fans of Jonathan Stroud's Bartimaeus books will devour this book - a cracking adventure brimming with magic, intrigue and a treasure trove of characters that the reader can't help but fall for. We find everyone's favourite irascibly insolent djinni serving at the court of King Solomon in 950 BC Jerusalem, where he is causing his customary chaos and must help a girl assassin sent by the Queen of Sheba steal the all-powerful ring of Solomon. The comic relief is perfectly timed, the dialogue sharp and snappy and the fiendishly clever plot perfectly handled with Jonathan's trademark flair and command of language. Thrills, chills and a danger-spiked finale - this is one of the publishing events of the year.
Jonathan Stroud, has long been a big name in the young adult world and yet I’ve only really read one of his titles before (Heroes in the Valley) which whilst fun, didn’t exactly set my world alight and left me wondering exactly how he’d managed to earn the kudos of so many readers.
That was until I read this book. Whilst I haven’t read other titles in the Bartimaus series, I was instantly struck with the authors writing style, that was not only fast paced but also written with an almost unparalleled level of humour as the reader follows the exploits of our heroic djinn. The style was crisp, the dialogue ideal but overall the real thing that sells the book is the principle character who not only stole the show but gave the reader a real link to the world in which he inhabited. This was done through his sense of humour alongside his warped principles for the way that the world should work which when backed up with an ego the size of a skyscraper really did make this something spectacular.
Finally add to this a seriously huge story arc, a huge selection of supporting cast members and an easy to access world made this ideal reading material and overall really has made me want to buy the previous titles so that I can have a lot more fun with the heroes other exploits. Great stuff, although judging by how the djinn have been pushed into service to create things for other, I do wonder if they sprinkled Jonathan’s writing with some of their magic. It really is just too good to be true.