The Other Book

The Other Book

4.0 1
by Philip Womack

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A gripping debut fantasy about an ancient book of magicSee more details below


A gripping debut fantasy about an ancient book of magic

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Anita Barnes Lowen
Long centuries ago The Other Book was given into the charge of the de la Zouche family, descendants of the wizard Merlin and the witch Vivien. It was an extraordinary book—powerful beyond imagination—and one that held the creatures of the Other World at bay. It was to be used to influence history and to bring about the greater glory of mankind, but the book was tainted by one who should have used it for good. "Your father has corrupted it. He has sown a seed of evil. It will take four centuries to leach out..." For four hundred years, The Other Book remained hidden. Now the time has come for it to be restored to the glory of its past and to its rightful heir. But who is the rightful heir? Is it ordinary school boy, Edward Pollock, who finds the book on a dusty library shelf? Or is it Lady Anne, the sinister newly hired teacher, who is willing to kill to have the book in her grasp, and who is the maiden whose blood "must surely be spilled for the source of evil to be truly killed?" The interesting—if muddled—plot, violence enough to satisfy the bloodthirsty (particularly in the beginning), and an ending with a few surprises, are sure to satisfy readers who enjoy dark boarding school fantasies with hints of an Arthurian quest. Reviewer: Anita Barnes Lowen
School Library Journal

Gr 6-9

Edward, 12, finds The Other Book, old and dusty, in the school library, and suddenly his life is far more interesting than he would like. Connected with Merlin, this magical tome gives whomever possesses it tremendous powers, which have been horribly misused in the past. While trying to protect the book and figure out what's going on, Edward experiences terrifying visions, ghostly knights, betrayal upon betrayal, kidnapping, and a sinister new teacher who will do anything, including commit murder, to get her hands on it. Part Arthurian quest, part gothic boarding school fantasy, the story includes a fair amount of violence and a not-completely-coherent plot. Characters appear out of the woodwork to rescue or impede Edward, who seems to make the wrong decisions over and over. Darren Shan fans might find this one appealing, but most readers can skip it.-Mara Alpert, Los Angeles Public Library

Kirkus Reviews
Womack works familiar fantasy elements into a tale with a distinctly penumbral atmosphere for his debut. The titular MacGuffin is an ancient, semi-animate tome that guards the gateway between this world and a nebulous but plainly horrible Other. For centuries in the keeping of the de la Zouche family, descendants of Merlin and Vivien, it had been hidden away on the grounds of Oldstone Manor (now a dreary boarding school) after one keeper used its power for evil-but the time has come to fulfill a prophecy by cleansing it with the blood of a "maiden." The onus falls on innocent young Edward Pollock, a student with uncommon sensitivity to the supernatural world and a penchant for very vivid dreams. Suddenly, Edward finds himself in a desperate struggle to understand what's going on, to resist the malicious influences of the volume that has been thrust into his hands, and most of all to keep it away from Lady Anne de la Zouche, a beautiful, arrogant witch. The author fills out the plot with plenty of captures, escapes, betrayals and revelations, tucks in encounters with luridly sinister magical creatures and after a muddled climax leaves the door open for future episodes. Fans of Jenny Nimmo's Charlie Bone series and similar dark-flavored fare will be drawn in. (Fantasy. 11-13)

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Product Details

Bloomsbury USA
Publication date:
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
File size:
2 MB
Age Range:
12 Years

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