Nevermoor: The Trials of Morrigan Crow by Jessica Townsend
So, I thought I’d reviewed this way back when it came out but realised that I hadn’t started my blog them so had only reviewed it online.
Ahead of the imminent release of book three in the series, Hollowpox (my review is here) I thought I’d post my review of book one here too.
I received a reading copy of this in exchange for review and while I knew it was the sort of story I’d enjoy, I just wasn’t prepared for how much I’d love it!
I was utterly hooked, pulled straight into the world of Nevermoor and still stubbornly gripping my umbrella on the Brolly Rail refusing to get off at the end.
It was hailed as the next Harry Potter by pretty much everyone and with good reason. It does draw heavily on what has come before – a purportedly cursed child with a pre-determined fate, a villain hiding in the shadows supposedly banished from Nevermoor with ordinary folk scared to mention him, a heavy dose of magic and friendships forged between a variety of ‘misfit’ type characters.
But, and it is a big BUT as this is where it moves away from the many other magic-adventure-type books written post-Potter: Jessica Townsend’s writing transforms this into so much more than a wannabe-HP: despite it’s obvious similarities, it feels fresh, unique and new.
The imagination that has gone into creating Nevermoor and the thought that has gone into detailing and describing its weird and wonderful features (not least the fantastic Hotel Deucalion, which I would happily handover a month’s pay packet to stay at for a night or two!) is truly wonderful: it is vibrant, bursting with life and sucks you right in.
The characters are charming, funny and believable. Morrigan is a perfect ‘heroine’ – at times insecure, at time courageous, but always loyal – I was relieved that she was also ‘real’ enough to be likeable.
Jupiter is zingy, zany and full of verve, his self-assured, confident manor the perfect balance to Morigan’s self-doubt.
Hawthorne brings humour, daring and warmth as the sort of sidekick anyone would want. And so the list goes on…all the characters bring something else to the story, none seem gratuitous.
The story itself zips along through the darkness of the Hunt of Smoke and Shadows and the elusive Mr Jones; the vivid colour of Nevermoor itself – the Hallowmas and Christmas celebrations in particular; the nerves, tenacity and adventure throughout the Trials (like others the Book Trial made me smile, but it was the witches in the Fright Trial I loved best).
It’s a book you don’t want to reach the end of – I can’t wait for the next instalment!