Skulduggery Pleasant - Derek Landy

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Skulduggery Pleasant - Derek Landy

Get ready for the biggest NEW publishing phenomenon of 2007! "So you won't keep anything from me again?" He put his hand to his chest. "Cross my heart...

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Review of "Skulduggery Pleasant - Derek Landy"

published 06/08/2008 | rosieemma91
Member since : 28/07/2008
Reviews : 40
Members who trust : 1
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Pro Fantasy in a modern setting.
Cons It had to end.
very helpful
Would you read it again?

"And he's the good guy......"

I first heard about this book from my little brother, who is, at twelve, four years younger than me. At the time, I assumed that the book was for that age group exclusively, and would not appeal to my terrbile fantasy addiction. However, one day I was bored and bookless, and so decided to give this book a chance. It turns out I am very glad I did.

Firstly, let me tell you a little bit about the author. On his website for the book Sluduggery Pleasant and it's sequel (Skulduggery Pleasant - Playing with Fire) it says that Landy wrote screenplays for a "zombie movie and a murderous thriller in which everybody dies." This vague description of Landy's writing is followed by the fact that he is a blackbelt in Kenpo Karate and has trained children to defend themselves in the hope of creating a munchkin army. I paused when I read this, and thereafter knew that this man could not have written a book I would not enjoy.

Landy lives in Dublin and Skulduggery Pleasant and it's sequel are his first books, which are soon due to be made into a film.

However enough about the author. More about the book. Well, it is a very striking looking book, which I like. If a book has a boring outer shell, I tend to be disinterested before even reading the blurb. However, the Skulduggery Pleasant book is definately one that would attract even the lover of the weirdest and kookiest kind of book covers.

The front cover is titled with the author's name, the name of the book and the caption "AND HE'S THE GOOD GUY." For anyone who is wondering why this is, the fact that Skulduggery Pleasant is a skeleton brought back from the dead explains in pretty much in a nutshell. The picture on the front by Tom Percival is predominantely of a terrifying looking skeleton in what appears to be a trilby, scarf, shirt, tie and jacket ensemble, with flames coming out of his finger bones.

In the foreground are the silhouettes of four people, two girls (one of whom is brandishing a sword) Skulduggery himself and another man. The title of the book is encased in a flourescent orange swirl, and all of the edges of the pages are also flourescent orange. Anyway, I have gone on for an insanely large amount of time about the look of the book, so let's get stuck into the actually story.

Surprisingly, the story isn't really centered on Skulduggery. He plays a large part of it, but most of the in fact focuses on a young Irish girl named Stephanie. When Stephanie's uncle Gordon dies, she finds that she has been left his house and the royalties he receives for the many novels on the supernatural he has written. She is of course, stunned, but little does she know that this act will soon turn her world upside down....

When she has to stop at her newly acquired house one night due to her Mother's car breaking down and her Mother going for help, Stephanie gets her first glimpse of an unknown world. The house is broken into by a man who threatens to kill her unless she gives him a key. She obviously knows nothing about this key and is in big trouble - until Skulduggery Pleasant turns up.

Stephanie had already met him twice in the story. Once at the wake after her uncle's funeral and once at the will reading where Skulduggery was left a legacy from Gordon. However, it wasn't a keepsake of money or a possession. It was some advice.

Skuduggery saves Stephanie, but in the process he shoots fire at the intruder - and the fire does't burn him. However, after being shot with a bullet, the intruder escapes and Stephanie is left with Skulduggery who's hat and scarf have fallen off to reveal that he's in fact...a skeleton.

Stephanie then faints, but after she wakes up Skulduggery explains to her about a world of magic, a world her Uncle was a part of. Gordon observed magic, learnt from it and wrote about it, but never used it. His books were based on real events he'd heard about.

Stephanie is then faced with a choice. Now she is faced with this new world full of wonders, will she be a part of it, or pretend she's blissfully ignorant and go on with her normal life? Well, of course, if she chose the latter there wouldn't be a book so she goes with Skulduggery and tries to find out who it was who tried to kill her and, in Skulduggery's mind, may have killed her Uncle.

Saying any more about the plot would make buying the book pointless. However, I can say that there are som frightening, some endearing characters throughout. I found the story itself excellent and constantly strong, and realised this book is the perfect addition to my fantasy filled library.

I would recommend this to fan of books such as Eragon and the Alanna the Lioness series, as it has all the magic and all the action as those books. The only difference is a modern twist, which I found quite refreshing.

A genuine joy to read.

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Comments on this review

  • blackmagicstar4 published 07/08/2008
    Good review. Sounds great. sophie x
  • CPTDANIELS published 06/08/2008
    Well reviewed.
  • jeaniecz published 06/08/2008
    sounds like a cool film
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Product Information : Skulduggery Pleasant - Derek Landy

Manufacturer's product description

Get ready for the biggest NEW publishing phenomenon of 2007! "So you won't keep anything from me again?" He put his hand to his chest. "Cross my heart and hope to die." "Okay then. Though you don't actually have a heart," she said. "I know." "And technically, you've already died." "I know that too." "Just so we're clear." Stephanie's uncle Gordon is a writer of horror fiction. But when he dies and leaves her his estate, Stephanie learns that while he may have written horror, it certainly wasn't fiction. Pursued by evil forces intent on recovering a mysterious key, Stephanie finds help from an unusual source -- the wisecracking skeleton of a dead wizard. When all hell breaks loose, it's lucky for Skulduggery that he's already dead. Though he's about to discover that being a skeleton doesn't stop you from being tortured, if the torturer is determined enough. And if there's anything Skulduggery hates, it's torture! Will evil win the day? Will Stephanie and Skulduggery stop bickering long enough to stop it? One thing's for sure: evil won't know what's hit it.

Product Details

Type: Fiction

Genre: Horror

Title: Skulduggery Pleasant

Author: Derek Landy

Publisher: HarperCollinsChildren'sBooks

Number of Pages: 368

Edition: Hardcover

ISBN: 0007241615; 0007241623; 0007241631; 0061231150; 0061231177


Listed on Ciao since: 14/09/2007