Harriet scrunched herself as small as she could. Beneath her, the rotting cupboard tottered. String twitched in her fingers. A green glow glimmered and intensified as power surged through the stormy blackness. The pair of figures hunting her turned shocked faces towards the burgeoning glare, and the teddy bear under her arm stirred as if awaking to life.
Harriet's escape from the hateful Shrubb Academy for the Gifted Juvenile shifts her along superstring, through a wormhole and into a parallel dimension where Bruno, the 'special' teddy bear she'd promised her dad she'd look after, turns into a very large, very living, Orlik.
But his world is threatened with destruction. It's a world controlled by Hoohahs (very much like humans), and they've invented a machine called a 'Psychlone' which means they don't need children any more. And a very powerful and greedy Hoohah is plotting with Kid Zero, a boy from Harriet's world, to take complete control of Bruno's in return for this 'Psychlone', which because it slows ageing would make Kid Zero extremely rich.
At first Harriet enjoys being the centre of attention, celebrated as 'The Thing from Beyond' and invited to all the best places. But she is mistaken for Kid Zero and when the real Kid Zero finds out, he uses the army of RATs he's developed to seize power to wreak havoc throughout the land. Harriet is the major target of his furious attack but everywhere, and soon everyone, is threatened.
Bruno leads the Elite Guard in defence of his world. Harriet and her two young Orlik friends, Woldark and Pruck, prove crucial to the fightback. But she's forced to flee, to shift again along the superstring and through the wormhole in a desperate attempt to get back to her dad.
For one thing has become clear: her father and his research are critical Kid Zero's rampage. She has to find him in order to stop Kid Zero. Accompanied by her two Orlik friends she is sent off along the superstring on a mission to find her dad and stop Kid Zero.
No one knows how the Shift works, however. No one can tell where she might end up...
This modern fable is an exciting children's story with a vibrant girl hero, ideal for middle-grade and confident readers. But adults too will enjoy the Gulliver's Travels'-style allusions to the world of today.
Look out for the sequel, 'Joan Dark', Part 2 of 'Harriet the Thing from Beyond', which will be published very shortly.