Elizabeth Harding’s life takes an unexpected turn when she falls into another dimension. And it doesn’t take a twelve-year-old whizz at maths to know this is going to mean trouble. Already struggling with the mysterious death of her father, and plagued by nightmares with smoke demons coming out of the walls, Elizabeth now finds herself lost in a strange and confusing world.
Her brain-melt doesn’t improve when she is taken in by a group of unlikely companions – a barbarian, a monk, a mad professor and his bandit niece. Elizabeth learns that her inter-dimensional tumble has been caused by one of their secret inventions. But when this clockwork box is captured in a surprise attack by the Dominion her predicament is suddenly a million times worse.
Undeterred by this development the group embark on a quest to retrieve the machine. There’s only one problem: stealing it back involves breaking into the Darkstone Tower and a possible confrontation with the Holy Empress herself. Oh, and now there’s the pesky matter of a prophecy to deal with and chaotic magical powers appear to have sprung-up from out of nowhere . . .
And so Elizabeth’s quest to get back home leads to the most extraordinary adventure of all – a journey that will unlock the secrets of her past and reveal who, and what, she really is.
HERE ARE MY THOUGHTS AND REVIEW
This is a cracking children’s fantasy book. Elizabeth Harding is having rather a hard time at school now that it is just her and her mum, after Elizabeth’s dad died. She gets teased such a lot and at home she has pretty strange dreams. On one rather disturbing night a sort of hole appears under her bed and she escapes through it. What she finds on the other side of this hole is a whole new dimension, a strange group of companions and quite a bit of magic power that she was unaware she had. The thing was there didn’t seem to be a way back. Elizabeth was in was a real cool adventure.
Elizabeth is quite a math wizard, just like her dad use to be. This story takes her on a journey of discovery of her family history and believing in herself. Her confidence begins to shine through as she is faced with a battle to find the thing that can return her back home to her mum. She finds courage in herself and real magic abilities that she has to learn how to use. A real super hero to get behind and cheer on.
This unusual group of friends are at times funny, with Elizabeth having to step in to take the lead. I loved how each small achievement could be linked to her personal development, to believe in herself and stop her being the wallflower. The way that buses and trains were caught and departed from did catch my breath but they were also leaps of faith for Elizabeth. Very subtle.
A wonderful middle grade read that particularly girls will love and read again and again, exciting and tense without being scary.
HERE IS A LITTLE ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Words. They are a-coming. They might not be flowing out like endless rain into a paper cup. But that’s ok, because I’d rather have them on the page. Even if it’s only a digital one.
It’s been nearly two weeks since I decided to (re)commit to my 500 word rule, and so far (despite a holiday, long walks and a stack of reading) I seem to be sticking to it. More or less.