Corby Flood (Far-Flung Adventures #2)

Corby Flood (Far-Flung Adventures #2)

5.0 1
by Paul Stewart, Chris Riddell
     
 

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The second magical, funny, and fabulously illustrated story in the Far Flung Adventures from the authors of Fergus Crane and the Edge Chronicles.
Corby Flood and her family are about to set sail on the rather ramshackle cruise ship, the S.S. Euphonia. Her boisterous brothers might not have noticed that anything is wrong, but Corby is highly observant and

Overview

The second magical, funny, and fabulously illustrated story in the Far Flung Adventures from the authors of Fergus Crane and the Edge Chronicles.
Corby Flood and her family are about to set sail on the rather ramshackle cruise ship, the S.S. Euphonia. Her boisterous brothers might not have noticed that anything is wrong, but Corby is highly observant and has a lot of time for note-taking and eavesdropping. Onboard, among the odd passengers and eccentric crew, there is a strange group of men in bowler-hats who call themselves The Brotherhood of Clowns. There's also a melancholy wailing sound coming from the hold. It's strictly out of bounds but Corby can't help investigating. What could be inside the crate she discovers down in the hold? As the ship arrives at its destination, Corby must enlist the help of some very well mustachioed locals to uncover the contents of the crate and the dark secrets of the menacing Clowns...

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Another perceptive, intrepid young protagonist takes the helm in Far-Flung Adventures: Corby Flood by Paul Stewart and Chris Riddell, the follow-up to last season's Far-Flung Adventures: Fergus Crane (which PW's starred review said "incorporates amusingly ludicrous elements with matter-of-fact ease"). Eight-year-old Corby investigates some mysterious singing coming from the hold of the S.S. Euphonia and unwittingly attracts the attentions of a frightening quintet of fellows. Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature - Naomi Milliner
When the 8-year-old title heroine sets sail on the S. S. Euphonia, she has no idea what adventures await her. Besides her parents, four older brothers (croquet fanatics all), and fickle sister, Corby is surrounded by a myriad of eccentric characters, including five "sinister gentlemen in...bottle-green hats" called The Brotherhood of the Clowns. Despite her efforts to avoid these men, Corby overhears a conversation in which they allude to a lucrative "job" they're doing for a creepy headmistress. Once the clowns learn that Corby heard them, they repeatedly attempt (and fail) to silence her. The clowns' job revolves around guarding and delivering a mysterious creature kept in a crate on ship, a creature whom Corby befriends after hearing it sing "the saddest song ever." Through a series of mishaps, both Corby and the creature are taken off the ship and left behind in a quirky but friendly village. As the tale comes to a climax, the clowns have rowed to shore and kidnapped the creature again—only this time they're up against Corby and the entire village. The second book in the "Far-Flung Adventures" series, this is a strange hybrid. Although the heroine is only eight, the vocabulary (especially extensive British croquet terminology) is for older readers. Corby is a likeable character, and readers' curiosity about the creature's identity will keep the pages turning. Unfortunately, after the last page is turned, they may be left unsatisfied. The illustrations are excellent, but promise more fun than the story delivers.
School Library Journal
Gr 3-5-The members of the large Flood family find themselves aboard a shabby cruise ship, with five of the children on their way to a new school. Eight-year-old Corby is the youngest and most resourceful of the lot, and as the S. S. Euphonia sails past the magical Dalcretian coast, she reads longingly about its wonders in Hoffendinck's Guide, a Baedeker-style travel guide. Curious Corby follows the other passengers around the ship, trying to find out everything she can about them, especially the Brotherhood of Clowns, five odd men in green bowler hats who appear to be plotting something sinister. When they catch her overhearing their scheme, they chase her on motorized deck chairs, and she barely escapes. While hiding from them in a crate of canned goods, Corby is unknowingly delivered to the Greek-like fishing town of Doralakia, which she had dreamed of seeing-but not while her family sails away without her. Stewart and Riddell follow up Fergus Crane (Random, 2006) with this second tongue-in-cheek mock-historical volume in the series. Like their "Edge Chronicles" (Random), Corby Flood is filled with Riddell's striking line drawings of peculiar characters, weird mechanical devices, and odd creatures. Fantasy fans will smile through to the end of this silly melodrama.-Walter Minkel, New York Public Library Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
From the Publisher
"The second sparky tale in the series, again embellished by the drawings of Chris Riddell . . . an eagerly awaited sequel." —The Independent (UK)
"Extremely funny and, of course, brilliantly illustrated by Chris Riddell." —Children's Bookseller Supplement (UK)
"Corby Flood is Stewart and Riddell's best book yet. Completely satisfying as an adventure, the new book is full of amusing characterisation and is endlessly playful and inventive." —Times Educational Supplement (UK)
"Receives 5/5 star rating. Fab stuff!" - Kraze Club (UK)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780385750905
Publisher:
Random House Children's Books
Publication date:
08/22/2006
Series:
Far Flung Adventures Series, #2
Pages:
256
Product dimensions:
6.16(w) x 7.29(h) x 0.89(d)
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

Read an Excerpt



Far-Flung Adventures: Corby Flood



By Paul Stewart and Chris Riddell


Random House


Paul Stewart and Chris Riddell

All right reserved.

ISBN: 0385750919



Chapter One

Chapter 1. The Saddest Song

It's quiet and dark here, and the forest floor sways and rolls beneath my feet. Sometimes I stumble, but I do not fall over, because I'm trapped inside this tree where it is always dark. Oh, how I long to see the sun again.

How did I get here? I can hardly remember . . .

Ah, yes, that's it. I followed my tongue. The sweet petals tasted so good, melting in my mouth, until I walked into this tree and got trapped inside.

Now there is no more sun. Just quiet and darkness and swaying. I feel so sad. My heart is so full of sadness that it must surely break . . .

I will sing to let the sadness out. Perhaps if I sing, the forest will stop rolling and swaying, and the sun will come back, and my heart will not break . . . just yet.

The S.S. Euphonia, ablaze with twinkling lights, glided across a moonlit sea. Its funnels were topped with streams of frothy white smoke, its gleaming sides peppered with brightly lit portholes and its decks thronged with glamorous promenaders, taking the air and watching the stars.

It was all so wonderful. So magical . . .

Corby Flood reached up and touched the glass that protected the faded poster. She traced the lettering in the starry sky above the beautiful ship with a finger.

'The S.S. Euphonia,' she read. '"Empress of the Seas". Enjoy thevoyage of a lifetime aboard this miracle of modern nautical engineering! Cruise the oceans of the world and explore the magical places along the way! Book now for the deluxe ten-ports-of-call cruise and receive your free copy of the famous Hoffendinck's
Guide.'

Corby's grip tightened on the battered leatherbound book she was clutching under her arm.

'Why, if it isn't one of those Hoffendinck's Guides,' said a gloomy voice.

Corby turned to find Captain Boris Belvedere standing before her. The captain -- never cheerful at the best of times -- was looking gloomier than ever. With his sagging skin and drooping moustache, he looked like nothing so much as a disappointed walrus.

'Didn't think we had any of those left on board,' he said. 'After all, it's not as if the poor old Euphonia stops anywhere interesting any more. In fact she doesn't stop anywhere at all any more! Dandoon to Harbour Heights non-stop, and back again . . .' His voice was low, lugubrious and tinged with regret. 'More's the pity.' He sighed. 'Hauling cargo is all the old "Empress of the Seas" and I are fit for. That, and the odd passenger or two who can't afford anything better . . .' He looked Corby up and down somewhat disapprovingly.

'Well, I think she's a lovely ship,' said Corby. 'And after Father's great disappointment . . .' Her voice wavered for a moment and she swallowed hard. 'Mother says we've got to learn to make the best of things and try to stay cheerful.' And she gave the captain what she hoped was a meaningful stare.

'Yes, well, ahem . . .' The captain turned away. 'Sometimes that's easier said than done, little girl. Especially when the bilge pump has broken and your first and your second engineers have left for better jobs.'

He cast a gloomy eye over the chipped paintwork, rusty railings and scuffed decking of the old ship.

'Still, that's only to be expected when hardly anything works any more,' he went on. 'The automatic parasols, the self-adjusting railings, the moving windbreaks . . .' He gestured about him in a wide arc. 'The Euphonia's only fit for the scrapheap,' hemuttered, shaking his head. 'Just like me!'


'Good news, Captain,' came a smooth, polished voice, and both he and Corby turned to see the ship's first officer Lieutenant Jon-Jolyon Letchworth- Crisp standing there, a suave smile on his lips. 'Arthur's managed to fix the bilge pump,' he said. 'At least, for the time being . . .'

'Good news?' said Captain Belvedere. 'If you say so, Letchworth- Crisp, if you say so . . .'

The captain turned and walked slowly away. 'I'll be in my cabin if you need me,' he added gloomily. 'Though why anybody should need me, I don't know . . .'

Jon-Jolyon turned to Corby and flashed a brittle smile. 'And how is young Miss Corby Flood today?' he asked.

'Fine, thanks,' said Corby.

'And your delightful mother and father?'

'Also fine.'

'And your four energetic brothers?'

Corby nodded. They both knew that there was only one person in the Flood family he was truly interested in. 'The same as ever,' she said. 'And before you ask, so is my enchanting older sister, Serena.'

Jon-Jolyon grinned. 'Glad to hear it. Do give her my very best regards, won't you?' he said, as he turned on his heels and strode off. 'And I hope we shall all meet up at dinner,' he called back over his shoulder.

Corby smiled -- a smile which faded the moment she was sure the lieutenant had gone. She opened Hoffendinck's Guide and, taking the pencil that dangled on a piece of string around her neck, she started writing . . .

H O F F E N D I N C K ' S G U I D E

THE HERMIT ISLANDS

These tiny crags, several hundred in number, were occupied by hermit fishermen for many years and are ideal for an afternoon picnic if passing. Consult the captain for details of tides, and always have a stout rowing boat at the ready in case of emergencies.

Some of the more interesting islands are:

Mortimer's Crag
-- very rocky, but home to a legendary mermaid so hideous that she is said to frighten fishermen to death with one look.

Stefan's Pile
-- covered in soft, grey sea-moss up to five feet thick, and home to eider crabs.

The Old Man of Fub -- famous for its nesting colony of blue-tailed goobies. Well worth a visit.

SIGHTS TO LOOK OUT FOR:

De Witt's Moonlight Flying Fish; a.k.a. Love Fish
-- on moonlit nights, these extraordinary fish can be seen swimming in large shoals close to the surface of the ocean. As the moonlight glints on the tops of the waves, the love fish engage in elaborate displays, leaping into the air in graceful arcs.

Legend has it that any who witness the flight of the love fish fall instantly in love.

NOTES

Corby stopped writing for a moment and gazed reflectively out to sea. How strange, she thought, to be writing notes about the people she met on board, instead of notes about the interesting places mentioned in Hoffendinck's Guide.

When they boarded the S.S. Euphonia, she'd been so excited by the prospect of all the fascinating sights she would see on her voyage home to Harbour Heights -- not that Corby could call Harbour Heights 'home' exactly. The only home she had ever known was the large white bungalow in Dandoon where she had been born eight years earlier. And as for the sights, it wasn't long before Corby had discovered that the closest she would ever get was peering at them on the distant horizon as the ship sailed past.

Still, at least she could read all about them in the guide. She squinted at a tiny black speck on the horizon.

Was that Mortimer's Crag? she wondered. Or Stefan's Pile? But she was too far away even to make a guess, she realized with a sigh.

At that moment Corby heard the sound of low muttering and shuffling footsteps coming up the stairs from the cabins below her.

Uh-oh, she thought, snapping shut Hoffendinck's Guide. It's the Hattenswillers!

Mr and Mrs Hattenswiller appeared at the top of the stairs. They were both wearing tall, conical hats with ear flaps, and matching ankle-length coats with lots of pockets. Whenever she met them, Mr Hattenswiller would click his heels together and nod at Corby politely, while Mrs Hattenswiller would smile, and the pair of them never failed to exchange greetings. And that was where the problem lay -- for no matter how hard she listened, Corby could never, ever, make out what they were saying.

Sometimes Mr Hattenswiller would speak, and his wife would smile knowingly as though he had just said the cleverest thing. But Corby had heard only a mumbled murmur. And sometimes Mrs Hattenswiller would say something, and her husband would nod vigorously in agreement. But again, Corby had heard nothing but a quiet whisper.

Once, taking a chance, she'd replied that she was 'very well, thank you' -- but both Hattenswillers had looked at her as if she were mad. His eyebrows had shot upwards, her smile had frozen, and the pair of them had continued on their way, exchanging puzzled comments that, of course, Corby couldn't hear properly. No, far better all round if she avoided them, she thought, as she scooted through the side door and onto the starboard deck.


From the Hardcover edition.





Excerpted from Far-Flung Adventures: Corby Flood
by Paul Stewart and Chris Riddell Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Meet the Author

Paul Stewart is a highly regarded author of books for young readers, most notably the bestselling Edge Chronicles and Fergus Crane. He is good at playing Musical Icebergs at parties. The author lives in Brighton, England.
Chris Riddell, co-creator of the Edge Chronicles and Fergus Crane, is an award-winning illustrator and political cartoonist. He has never met a laughing goat, but would very much like to.The illustrator lives in Brighton, England.

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Corby Flood (Far-Flung Adventures #2) 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book and everything I've read by these authors are great!These books are straight up fun for young readers!