The Faceless Ones (Skulduggery Pleasant Series #3)
  • The Faceless Ones (Skulduggery Pleasant Series #3)
  • The Faceless Ones (Skulduggery Pleasant Series #3)

The Faceless Ones (Skulduggery Pleasant Series #3)

4.8 80
by Derek Landy
     
 

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Valkyrie screamed, sprinting toward Skulduggery.
He looked up and reached out to her, but it was too late. . . .

If you've read the other Skulduggery Pleasant books by Derek Landy (and you really should have read them by now), you've seen it all before: Some bad guy wants to bring about the end of the world, and Skulduggery and Valkyrie

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Overview

Valkyrie screamed, sprinting toward Skulduggery.
He looked up and reached out to her, but it was too late. . . .

If you've read the other Skulduggery Pleasant books by Derek Landy (and you really should have read them by now), you've seen it all before: Some bad guy wants to bring about the end of the world, and Skulduggery and Valkyrie fight valiantly to stop it from happening. A few people get hurt, sure, but everything's all right in the end.

Well, not this time.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Shirley Nelson
Skullduggery Pleasant, the skeleton detective, and his teen apprentice Valkyrie Cain, aka Stephanie Edgley, must again battle the forces of evil to save the world. But this time they are barred from the scene of the crime by the Sanctuary, the police force for magical powers in Dublin. Teleporters are being murdered and the Diablerie has infiltrated the Sanctuary. The mysterious Batu and his hitman Billy Ray Sanguine must be stopped. Along with Tanith Low, China Sorrows, and Ghastly Bespoke, Skullduggery and Valkyrie fight to prevent Batu from opening a gate that would allow the Faceless Ones to enter the mortal realm and take over the world. To do so, Skullduggery and Valkyrie must protect the last surviving Teleporter, an arrogant, immature teen named Fletcher Renn. They must also find a black crystal to repair the Sceptor, the only effective weapon against the Faceless Ones. Joining forces with Necromancers, they succeed in stopping the Faceless Ones. Disaster has been averted for now, but the cost is high. At the end of the third adventure of this series, Valkyrie faces a terrible decision: will she need to become a Necromancer to save her friends? In Skullduggery Pleasant, Landy blends humor with darkness and violence to provide a rollicking read for those brave enough to enter his magical world. Reviewer: Shirley Nelson
Children's Literature - Alison King
Stephanie Edgley has always yearned for something more than the ordinary life she leads. The death of her strange and fantastical uncle Gordon Edgley opens the door to the world of magic, but if you are thinking of fairies, think again! The first surprise comes when she learns that she inherits most of her uncle's not inconsiderable estate. The bigger surprise comes when she meets one of his closest friends, "Skullduggery Pleasant." He is a dead magician who has come back to life, possessed by thoughts of revenge and victory against his old nemesis, Nefarian Serpine, who only wants to end the world as we know it by bringing back the original evil gods with the use of a Scepter that no one believes is real. Did I mention Skullduggery is a skeleton with a borrowed skull plus great fashion sense? Together Stephanie and Skullduggery embark on a journey of discovery and adventure, meeting interesting characters along the way, like the scarred boxer-tailor Ghastly Bespoke; Tanith Low, the troll-slaying lady in black; and China Sorrow, the seductress who appears to have a romantic hold on Skullduggery's reluctant affections. Derek Landy has written a delightful book about a young girl who realizes she's been a heroine waiting to happen all along, as she claims her rightful status as a warrior mage. The following books in the series are sure to be great reads.
VOYA - Amy Sisson
Skulduggery Pleasant and Valkryie Cain (aka Stephanie Edgley) are back to save the world again in this third adventure by Irish author Landy. Someone is murdering teleporters, but Skulduggery and Valkryie's investigation is hampered by the fact that the two are now fugitives from the Sanctuary. The murders continue until only one teleporter remains, a brash, untrained seventeen-year-old named Fletcher Renn, needed by the evil Diablerie to open a portal so the Faceless Ones can return to this world. As with the series' previous installments, this book is entertaining and fast paced. Although the plot is not particularly memorable and it can be difficult to keep some of the more minor characters straight, Skulduggery and Valkryie remain one of the more entertaining duos in recent young adult fiction, tempering their affection for and loyalty to one another with constant, witty jibes. Characters from the earlier books, including Tanith Low and Kenspeckle Grouse, make welcome appearances in this volume, and Kenspeckle's oft-repeated concern—that Valkryie is giving up and risking too much in this ongoing fight against evil—is surprisingly touching. Readers will continue to appreciate that the violence is real rather than cartoonish, causing authentic damage, including to Valkryie. Although this particular adventure is concluded, Skulduggery's uncertain fate would indicate that at least one more book is forthcoming. Both public and school libraries should continue to stock this well-written, entertaining series. Reviewer: Amy Sisson
School Library Journal
Gr 5–8—This story picks up where Playing with Fire (HarperCollins, 2008) leaves off. The skeleton detective and his 14-year-old sidekick, Valkyrie, have uncovered an evil plot to allow the Faceless Ones through a portal into our world, which will surely bring about the destruction of life as we know it. Banished from the department and branded a dangerous character, Skulduggery is not allowed to work the case, but he is able to uncover enough information to put the pieces together. The plot contains many twists and double crosses as dubious characters factor into the mystery. In the end, sacrifices are made and Valkyrie is faced with a difficult decision. This third installment has enough action to keep casual or new readers interested in what happens next. Kids who have outgrown Lemony Snicket will enjoy the series.—Karen Hoth, Manatee Elementary School, Fort Myers, FL
Kirkus Reviews
It's another near squeak for humanity as the laconic, more-or-less dead detective with the natty fashion sense and his young adrenaline-junkie sidekick Valkyrie Cain (nee Stephanie) face off against the Diablerie-an all-too-capable gang of supervillains who always seem to stay one step ahead in their scheme to bring the vengeful Elder Gods back to this plane. As in the two previous episodes (which should be read first by anyone who wants to keep story line and cast members straight), Landy has entirely too much fun strewing his caper with bloody mayhem, often-hilarious dialogue and an array of distinctive mages and magical creatures as he propels events to a harrowing, ultra-violent climactic battle that litters the landscape with the corpses of allies and enemies both. A gifted storyteller, the author will hook readers on the first page and leave them on the last as wrung out as he leaves his teenage protagonist-who pays a high price indeed for killing a god or two. Rattling good fun. (Fantasy. 11-13)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780061240935
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
06/29/2010
Series:
Skulduggery Pleasant Series, #3
Pages:
422
Sales rank:
144,966
Product dimensions:
5.10(w) x 7.50(h) x 1.10(d)
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

Read an Excerpt

Skulduggery Pleasant

Chapter One

Stephanie

Gordon Edgley's sudden death came as a shock to everyone—not least himself. One moment he was in his study, seven words into the twenty-fifth sentence of the final chapter of his new book, And the Darkness Rained upon Them, and the next he was dead. A tragic loss, his mind echoed numbly as he slipped away.

The funeral was attended by family and acquaintances but not many friends. Gordon hadn't been a well-liked figure in the publishing world, for although the books he wrote—tales of horror and magic and wonder—regularly reared their heads in the bestseller lists, he had the disquieting habit of insulting people without realizing it, then laughing at their shock. It was at Gordon's funeral, however, that Stephanie Edgley first caught sight of the gentleman in the tan overcoat.

He was standing under the shade of a large tree, away from the crowd, the coat buttoned up all the way despite the warmth of the afternoon. A scarf was wrapped around the lower half of his face, and even from her position on the far side of the grave, Stephanie could make out the wild and frizzy hair that escaped from the wide-brimmed hat he wore low over his gigantic sunglasses. She watched him, intrigued by his appearance. And then, like he knew he was being observed, he turned and walked back through the rows of headstones and disappeared from sight.

After the service, Stephanie and her parents traveled back to her dead uncle's house, over a humpbacked bridge and along a narrow road that carved its way through thick woodland. The gates were heavy and grand and stoodopen, welcoming them into the estate. The grounds were vast, and the old house itself was ridiculously big.

There was an extra door in the living room, a door disguised as a bookcase, and when she was younger Stephanie liked to think that no one else knew about this door, not even Gordon himself. It was a secret passageway, like in the stories she'd read, and she'd make up adventures about haunted houses and smuggled treasures. This secret passageway would always be her escape route, and the imaginary villains in these adventures would be dumbfounded by her sudden and mysterious dis-appearance. But now this door, this secret passageway, stood open, and there was a steady stream of people through it, and she was saddened that this little piece of magic had been taken from her.

Tea was served and drinks were poured and little sandwiches were passed around on silver trays, and Stephanie watched the mourners casually ap-praise their surroundings. The major topic of hushed conversation was the will. Gordon wasn't a man who doted, or even demonstrated any great affec-tion, so no one could predict who would inherit his substantial fortune. Stephanie could see the greed seep into the watery eyes of her father's other brother, a horrible little man called Fergus, as he nodded sadly and spoke somberly and pocketed the silverware when he thought no one was looking.

Fergus's wife was a thoroughly dislikable, sharp-featured woman named Beryl. She drifted through the crowd, deep in unconvincing grief, prying for gossip and digging for scandal. Her daughters did their best to ignore Stephanie. Carol and Crystal were twins, fifteen years old and as sour and vindictive as their parents. Whereas Stephanie was dark haired, tall, slim, and strong, they were bottle blond, stumpy, and dressed in clothes that made them bulge in all the wrong places. Apart from their brown eyes, no one would have guessed that the twins were related to her. She liked that. It was the only thing about them she liked. She left them to their petty glares and snide whispers, and went for a walk.

The corridors of her uncle's house were long and lined with paintings. The floor beneath her feet was wooden, polished to a gleam, and the house smelled of age. Not musty, exactly, but . . . experienced. These walls and these floors had seen a lot in their time, and Stephanie was nothing but a faint whisper to them. Here one instant, gone the next.

Gordon had been a good uncle. Arrogant and irresponsible, yes, but also childish and enormous fun, with a light in his eyes, a glint of mischief. When everyone else was taking him seriously, Stephanie was privy to the winks and the nods and the half smiles that he would shoot her way when they weren't looking. Even as a child, she'd felt she understood him better than most. She liked his intelligence, and his wit, and the way he didn't care what people thought of him. He'd been a good uncle to have. He'd taught her a lot.

She knew that her mother and Gordon had briefly dated ("courted," her mother called it), but when Gordon had introduced her to his younger brother, it was love at first sight. Gordon liked to grumble that he had never gotten more than a peck on the cheek, but he had stepped aside graciously, and had quite happily gone on to have numerous torrid affairs with numerous beautiful women. He used to say that it had almost been a fair trade, but that he suspected he had lost out.

She climbed the staircase to the first floor, pushed open the door to Gordon's study, and stepped inside. The walls were filled with the framed covers from his bestsellers. They shared space with all manner of awards. One entire wall was made up of shelves jammed with books. There were biographies and historical novels and science texts and psychology tomes, and there were battered little paperbacks stuck in between. A lower shelf had magazines, literary reviews, and quarterlies. She passed the shelves that housed first editions of Gordon's novels and approached the desk.

She looked at the chair where he'd died, trying to imagine him there, how he must have slumped.

And then a voice so smooth, it could have been made of velvet.

Skulduggery Pleasant. Copyright © by Derek Landy. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

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Meet the Author

Derek Landy lives near Dublin. Before writing his children's story about a sharply dressed skeleton detective, he wrote the screenplays for a zombie movie and a little thriller in which everybody dies.

As a blackbelt in Kenpo Karate, he has taught countless children how to defend themselves, in the hopes of one day building his own private munchkin army. He firmly believes that they await his call to strike against his enemies (he doesn't actually have any enemies but he's assuming they'll show up sooner or later).

The reason Derek writes his own biographical blurb is so that he can finally refer to himself in the third person without looking pompous or insane.

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Faceless Ones 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 80 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved the book it was awesome!!!did you know the author is a black belt in karate
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
THIS SERIES IS ABSOLUTELY 1002.999% AMAZING! I HAVE READ THEM ALL AND I'M COMPLETELY OBSESSED WITH THEM!!!!!! I DEFINATELY RECOMMEND THESE BOOKS! BUY THEM ALL RIGHT NOW!!!! YOU WILL NOT REGRET IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
best series ever
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!:)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This bookwas very good but was a little sad when skuldugerry Dissapiers
Anonymous 3 months ago
Very witty, sarcastic, funny, with a healthy bit of violence. Minor cussing. Im nine and i love this book
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Desomd
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
One of my favorite series ever. Skulduggery Pleasant is witty, sarcastic, full of adventure, and funny enough to make anyone laugh. This is one of those series that kids and parents will enjoy.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Therw is jo vook four yet
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I reccomend this book to anyone, especially those who like mystery/suspense/sci-fi fantasy. Humor is well placed throughout the book even though its not a comedy book. I am laughing histarically at the witty comments and crazy"plans". That is when they have a plan not just, and i quote," Lets get up close and see what happens." Derek Landy is an extraordinary author and i love the Skulduggary Pleasant series so far. I cant wait for the 8th book this fall!!! This series would make the best movies EVER!!!!!! PLEASE HURRY UP WITH THE NEXT BOOK!!!!!! ITS HARD GOING SO LONG WITHOUT SP!!!!!! I ONLY WISH I COULD GIVE MORE THAN 5 STARS CUZ ITS JUST THAT GOOD!!!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Decended from the fabled Ancients! The staff will not sing to give her away! The savior from the end of the world! Her mentor ( and sidekick( you have to admit) ) Skulduggery Pleasant! I present the one and only Valkyre! I love this book!
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
WHAT HAPPENS TO SKULDUGGERY???? WHY DUSNT BARNS AND NOBLE THE REST OF THE SERIES????!!!!! WHY?! -SHADEON;D
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