The Luck Uglies

( 6 )

Overview

Rye O'Chanter has seen a lot of strange things happen in Village Drowning. She and her friends have grown up on Drowning's treacherous streets—its twisted rooftops and forgotten cemeteries are their playground.

Now a terrifying encounter on the night of the Black Moon has Rye convinced that the monstrous, supposedly extinct Bog Noblins have returned from the forest Beyond the Shale. There's nobody left who can...

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Overview

Rye O'Chanter has seen a lot of strange things happen in Village Drowning. She and her friends have grown up on Drowning's treacherous streets—its twisted rooftops and forgotten cemeteries are their playground.

Now a terrifying encounter on the night of the Black Moon has Rye convinced that the monstrous, supposedly extinct Bog Noblins have returned from the forest Beyond the Shale. There's nobody left who can protect the village. There was once—an exiled secret society so notorious that its name can't be spoken out loud.

The Luck Uglies.

As Rye dives into Drowning's maze of secrets, rules, and lies, she begins to question everything she's been told about the village's legend of outlaws and beasts . . . and what she'll discover is that it may take a villain to save them from the monsters.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
07/21/2014
In Durham's witty fantasy debut, 11-year-old Rye O'Chanter is bent on mischief with her friends Quinn and Folly. They live in Village Drowning, a muddy place haunted by tales of ravenous Bog Noblins, vicious creatures from Beyond the Shale, and criminal Luck Uglies, outlaw robbers long since driven away by the Earl of Longchance, who holds Drowning in an iron grip. Rye's household offers no respite from the peculiarities of the outside world: her mother enforces a cryptic set of House Rules, Rye's pet cat Shady can't possibly be only a cat, and her father's identity remains unknown to her. When a monster from legend and a tattooed man named Harmless appear, Rye aligns with the blind street rat Truitt and the Earl's unpleasant daughter, Malydia, to help the Luck Uglies save Drowning from dangers without and tyranny within. First in a planned trilogy, this adventure staggers slightly under the weight of its thorny plot turns, but is kept aloft by brisk wordplay, a charming heroine, and a provocative blurring of the border between heroism and villainy. Ages 8–12. Author's agent: Michelle Andelman, Regal Literary. (May)
—Stefan Bachmann
“Funny, magical, and absolutely crackling with those little sparks that make a book wonderful. It’s an action-packed adventure with heroes you’ll root for and baddies you’ll hiss at, all set in a land that I, for one, would love to visit again.”
—Marissa Burt
“Midnight adventures, smart humor, a richly imagined otherworld, and winsome characters—The Luck Uglies has the perfect ingredients for a spell-binding read. If you are lucky enough to pick up this book, prepare for a wild ride!”
—Christopher Healy
“Paul Durham has created the best kind of fantasy world—one that is equal parts wondrous and deadly, and in which the line between heroism and villainy is deliciously blurred.”
—Jonathan Auxier
“A magical, mist-shrouded world humming with danger and mystery.”
Kirkus Reviews
★ 2014-02-05
A sparkling middle-grade fantasy opens a trilogy. Rye O'Chanter is a somewhat clumsy 11-year-old who enjoys hijinks with best friends Quinn and Folly on the roofs and lanes of Village Drowning, a dark, medieval-feeling town. It's run by a nasty, self-absorbed earl and surrounded by bogs that have spawned a legend of Bog Noblins—vile beasts who eat unwary villagers and adorn themselves with necklaces made out of said villagers' feet. Many years earlier, a secret society of protectors named Luck Uglies had fought and vanquished the Bog Noblins, and now, neither monsters nor secret society members exist. Or do they? When a real, not-just-legend, Bog Noblin shows up and begins to terrorize Village Drowning, old fears as well as old secrets are resurrected. Debut author Durham spins a tale of intrigue and adventure peopled with characters so individually full of both goodness and flaws that readers will immediately relate. It is this nuance of character that raises the narrative above the trope of a good-vs.-evil storyline and into richer, more layered territory. Durham combines intelligent writing that does not talk down to the intended audience with an innocent charm—a concoction that is sure to captivate readers and make them thankful that this is Book 1 of a trilogy. Layers, nuance, wit and a thumping good story make this a must-read. (Fantasy. 9-13)
Stefan Bachmann
“Funny, magical, and absolutely crackling with those little sparks that make a book wonderful. It’s an action-packed adventure with heroes you’ll root for and baddies you’ll hiss at, all set in a land that I, for one, would love to visit again.”
Marissa Burt
“Midnight adventures, smart humor, a richly imagined otherworld, and winsome characters—The Luck Uglies has the perfect ingredients for a spell-binding read. If you are lucky enough to pick up this book, prepare for a wild ride!”
Joseph Delaney
“The Luck Uglies has it all: a feisty heroine, monstrous creatures, and a brimful of humor, and horror, to keep the readers turning the pages.”
Christopher Healy
“Paul Durham has created the best kind of fantasy world—one that is equal parts wondrous and deadly, and in which the line between heroism and villainy is deliciously blurred.”
Jonathan Auxier
“A magical, mist-shrouded world humming with danger and mystery.”
Booklist (starred review)
“By turns funny and heart-stopping . . . a bona fide page-turner.”
School Library Journal
03/01/2014
Gr 5–7—Eleven-year-old Rye and her best friends, Quinn and Folly, are curious about their town and its history. What really lies beyond Village Drowning's walls in the area known as Beyond the Shale? Do the huge, ravenous monsters known as Bog Noblins actually exist? Are there still avengers known as Luck Uglies? The trio tries to find answers in Tam's Tome, a book banned by the Earl. In their quest for knowledge, the children become accidental thieves and must escape from the Angry Poet. Together with help from her friends, Rye uncovers the village's secrets (and those within her own family), including an underground maze that leads from one end of the village to the other. Confrontations with Bog Noblins bring back the banished and much maligned Luck Uglies to defeat the evil creatures and return justice to Drowning. Rye learns that things aren't always as they seem and that people are not all good or bad but often somewhere in between. Nonstop action makes for a rollicking good tale set in a medieval-like place and period. The fast plot is enhanced by humor, likable characters—including some adults—undiluted heroism, frightful Bog Noblins, and a despicable Earl. Altogether, this is a fast, fresh, and engaging adventure sure to delight readers on several levels.—Maria B. Salvadore, formerly at District of Columbia Public Library
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780062271501
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 4/29/2014
  • Pages: 400
  • Sales rank: 134,959
  • Age range: 8 - 12 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.30 (w) x 5.90 (h) x 1.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Paul Durham

Paul Durham was raised in Massachusetts and at-tended college and law school in Boston. He now lives in New Hampshire with his wife, two daughters, and an enormous bushy creature the local animal shelter identified as a cat. He writes in an abandoned chicken coop at the edge of a swamp and keeps a tiny porcelain frog in his pocket for good luck.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 6 )
Rating Distribution

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(6)

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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 1, 2014

    My Likes About This Book: 1.)It is full of magic with every tur

    My Likes About This Book:

    1.)It is full of magic with every turn of the page.

    2.)The names of the people, places, and things fit them just perfectly with extraordinary whimsy.

    3.)The awestruck feeling I got when I read the first Harry Potter book I got while reading this book. I want to be a Luck Ugly!
     
    My Dislikes About This Book:

    1.)That this story is fictional, lol!
     

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 18, 2014

    Excellent story! I couldn't put it down and didn't want it to e

    Excellent story! I couldn't put it down and didn't want it to end! Can't wait for the next book in this series!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 14, 2014

    As the story unfolds you will see in your minds eye, the village

    As the story unfolds you will see in your minds eye, the village, the colorful
     nature of each place, and experience the individual characters personalities. In
     particular, you see a young girl mature beyond her years (Rye) as she
    discovers all the secrets and experiences of a wonderful enchanting adventure.
     Older adults will relate to Rye's mother and to Harmless. You can see the wonder of
     your own children and grandchildren reflected in the characters as they
     guide along their path in the book. Younger readers will envy Rye and her
    friend's adventures. This book has it all, secrets, adventure, unexpected
     heroes, and villains, all colorful characters that you will learn to love.
    Some characters more endearing than others, but all very important to the
     journey. My favorite place in the book, the ..oops almost gave it away. No
    worry, you will have your own.

    I sat reading as if I was watching a movie. It's not about the reading, but rather
     being immersed in the story that the author puts down on paper. That's the
     hallmark of a great book. It draws you in and you don't want to it to end. You will want to read this book more than once. On the second time through I watched as Mr. Durham developed the nuances of the characters and Village Drowning. I can't wait for the second book to see where it takes Rye and her friends and family. Read this book you
    not be disappointed.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 16, 2014

    I loved this book. It has everything: an endearing heroine wit

    I loved this book. It has everything: an endearing heroine with plucky friends, an extraordinary setting, a riveting plot, creepy monsters, good guys, and bad guys. The writing is clever and imaginative, with the most detailed descriptions of people, places, and emotions. The Village of Drowning, with all of its unique features and quirky residents, becomes alive immediately. it's a wonderful story for adults as well as children. The CD is amazing, too.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 16, 2014

    Quirky characters, imaginative dream-like world, we could not pu

    Quirky characters, imaginative dream-like world, we could not put it down!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 21, 2014

    Three words: Fantastic, fantastic, and fantastico! I'm going thr

    Three words: Fantastic, fantastic, and fantastico! I'm going through a bit of a let down b/c I've finished The Luck Uglies and I didn't want it to end! The characters, the world building, the Bog Noblins, the mother-daughter relationship- all of it was just perfection. Plus, there's rooftop shenanigans, fast friendships, and a secret society that I would give my eye teeth to belong to. Rye is such an amazing character, and I'm looking forward to her continuing her adventures(there better be another one!). ~Leandra Wallace

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews

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