Dreadful Acts (Eddie Dickens Trilogy Series #2)

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Overview

In this eagerly awaited sequel to A House Called Awful End, Eddie Dickens narrowly avoids being blown up, trampled by horses, hit by a hot-air balloon, and arrested--only to find himself falling head over heels for a girl with a face like a camel's and into the hands of a murderous gang of escaped convicts, up on the misty moors, who have a "little job" for him to do.

All the old favorites are here--including Mad Uncle Jack and Malcolm (or is ...
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Overview

In this eagerly awaited sequel to A House Called Awful End, Eddie Dickens narrowly avoids being blown up, trampled by horses, hit by a hot-air balloon, and arrested--only to find himself falling head over heels for a girl with a face like a camel's and into the hands of a murderous gang of escaped convicts, up on the misty moors, who have a "little job" for him to do.

All the old favorites are here--including Mad Uncle Jack and Malcolm (or is it Sally?) the stuffed stoat--along with some worrying-looking new ones. Beware!

Twelve-year-old Eddie Dickens survives encounters with an escape artist in a runaway hearse's coffin, a hot air balloon bearing the escape artist's lovely assistant, a gas explosion, and a jewel thief on the run.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
The House at Awful End author Philip Ardagh returns with a witty second act in the Eddie Dickens Trilogy. After Eddie meets the Great Zucchini, an escapologist whose greatest performance wish is to escape a buried coffin, the GZ's assistant makes a sudden crash landing next to them a hot-air balloon. Eddie learns that the balloon has been swiped from world-famous photographer Wolfe Tablet -- who's been trying to learn the Zucchini's secrets -- and when the "Peelers" (make that, police) show up to cart them all off to Grimpen Jail, the lad devises a plan to get his chums free. Fans of Ardagh's first Dickens book will be in stitches over the second. With Eddie, the stoat, and plenty of zany characters -- along with enough loony antics to make your head spin -- Ardagh's Dreadful Acts is anything but dreadful!
Publishers Weekly
The second installment of the Eddie Dickens Trilogy begins as 12-year-old Eddie's home erupts in a gas explosion and Eddie meets the Great Zucchini, an escape artist whose coffin is propelled from the back of a passing hearse by the force of the blast. Ages 8-12. (May) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature
Nary a dull moment for Eddie Dickens! Set in Victorian England, Eddie attempts to just get by without too much catastrophe, not always succeeding. The reader will encounter a colorful group of characters in this book, including (but certainly NOT limited to) Eddie's gimmick-loving mother, who recently insisted that Eddie carry a fistful of them wherever he goes, Mad Uncle Jack, Eddie's great uncle who carries a pre-gritted pair of teeth around in the side pocket of his coat and the Great Zucchini, who is not a wandering theatrical, but is an escapologist (professional escaper, for those unfamiliar with the term) who emerges out of a coffin in the back of a hearse. A glossary (of sorts) at the end of the book defines unfamiliar terms in the book, and some that are not even in the book! This book is quirky, great fun for the intended age group to read as well as for adults (with amazingly dry humor) as a read aloud to younger children. It is book two of "The Eddie Dickens Trilogy," the sequel to A House Called Awful End. Recommended. 2001, Scholastic Inc, Ages 8 to 12.
—Cindy L. Carolan
School Library Journal
Gr 4-6-Eddie Dickens, hero of A House Called Awful End (Holt, 2002), returns. This time, his adventures begin with a bang, or rather a boom, as his father accidentally blows a large hole in the house by lighting a match after leaving the gas on. The noise spooks a pair of horses that have mysteriously appeared in the yard, trailing a hearse with a coffin inside. To the boy's horror, the coffin begins to open-and The Great Zucchini, a famous escapologist whose latest trick has gone horribly wrong, emerges. Suddenly, Eddie finds himself caught up in a whirlwind of activity in which he is thrown in jail, kidnapped by escaped convicts, and involved in a mad chase across the moors. Ardagh keeps the tone light and engages in a nonstop stream of wordplay and general zaniness. The characters in this quirky British series are purely stock, and the plot is deliberately far-fetched. Fans of Monty Python's style of humor will appreciate the constant verbal wit, slapstick, and random plot twists. Others will find the narration grating and hard to follow. Roberts's dark line drawings (a cross between the art of Edward Gorey and Shel Silverstein) appear throughout the text. A glossary provides definitions for some of the Briticisms and more obscure words. Not an essential purchase, this book may occupy Lemony Snicket's fans who are anxiously awaiting the next installment in that series.-Ashley Larsen, Woodside Library, CA Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
From the Publisher
A Book Sense Children's 76 Winter 2003 - 2004 title

"Ardagh's prose is a blend of archaic elegance, silly puns, and direct address, with playful author and plot digressions. . . . Black-and-white drawings with a touch of the macabre add further period flavor and farce. This will be great for series' fans, but it will also stand alone." —Booklist

Bookshelf —New York Times Book Review

"[T]he series is endlessly jokey and playful. Many a child will laugh aloud at parenthetical snide remarks, and the illustrations by David Roberts have a very contemporary spookiness." —Bookpage

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780439537605
  • Publisher: Scholastic, Inc.
  • Publication date: 5/28/2004
  • Series: Eddie Dickens Trilogy Series, #2
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 128
  • Age range: 9 - 12 Years
  • Product dimensions: 4.70 (w) x 8.04 (h) x 0.26 (d)

Meet the Author

Philip Ardagh is over six feet seven inches tall with a big bushy beard. Not only is he very large and very hairy, but he has also written around sixty children’s books for all ages. Currently a full-time writer living with a wife and two cats in a seaside town somewhere in England, he has been—among other things—an advertising copywriter, a hospital cleaner, a (highly unqualified) librarian, and a reader for the blind.

David Roberts is so busy drawing pictures that no one is really sure what he looks like. We do know that he has illustrated several books for children and lives somewhere in England, but whether his home is near the sea or not is anybody’s guess.

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Read an Excerpt

Dreadful Acts

Book Two in the Eddie Dickens Trilogy
By Ardagh, Philip

Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)

Copyright © 2003 Ardagh, Philip
All right reserved.

ISBN: 0805071555

Eddie found himself being lifted up by the neck, something that'd only been done to him once before (by a not-so-charming woman called Mrs. Cruel-Streak) and that hadn't been half so frightening as it was now, having it done by an escaped convict in a cave, up on the misty moors when no one knew where he was. --from Dreadful Act


Continues...

Excerpted from Dreadful Acts by Ardagh, Philip Copyright © 2003 by Ardagh, Philip. 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.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 12, 2008

    I wasn't impressed.

    It was ok. I guess if you like books about history then you'll like it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 28, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted June 8, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

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