The Edge Chronicles 8: Vox: Second Book of Rook

The Edge Chronicles 8: Vox: Second Book of Rook

by Paul Stewart, Chris Riddell
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The Edge Chronicles 8: Vox: Second Book of Rook by Paul Stewart, Chris Riddell

When young librarian knight Rook Barkwater is taken captive and forced to work for Vox Verlix – nominally the Most High Academe, but no more than a prisoner in reality – he stumbles across a terrible truth. Vox is brewing a plot to destroy the goblins and the shrykes at a stroke, so that he can seize control of the Edgeworld for himself.

Can Rook foil Vox's plan and save the lives of his librarian friends and colleagues?

Vox is the second book of the Rook Saga – third trilogy in The Edge Chronicles, the internationally best-selling fantasy series, which has featured on the UK and the New York Times best-seller lists and sold more than 3 million copies. There are now 13 titles and four trilogies in the series, but each book is a stand-alone adventure, so you can read The Edge Chronicles in any order you choose.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781446498255
Publisher: RHCP
Publication date: 01/31/2012
Series: Edge Chronicles Series , #6
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 400
File size: 10 MB
Age Range: 9 - 12 Years

About the Author

Paul Stewart (Author)
Paul Stewart is a highly regarded author of books for young readers - everything from picture books to football stories, fantasy and horror. Together with Chris Riddell, he is co-creator of the bestselling Edge Chronicles series, which has sold over three million books and is now available in over thirty languages. They are also co-creators of the Far-Flung Adventure series, which includes Fergus Crane, Gold Smarties Prize Winner, Corby Flood and Hugo Pepper, Silver Nestle Prize Winners, and the Barnaby Grimes Series.

Chris Riddell (Author)
Chris Riddell is an acclaimed artist of children’s books and a political cartoonist for the Observer. Amongst other titles, Chris illustrates the Ottoline young fiction series and the Goth Girl series, as well as working closely with Paul Stewart on the Edge Chronicles and Wyrmeweald. Children's Laureate from 2015-2017, he has won many awards for his work, including the Nestlé Gold Award, the UNESCO Award for Something Else and the rare honour of three Kate Greenaway Medals.

Read an Excerpt


By Paul Stewart Illustrated by Chris Riddell

Random House

Copyright (C) 2003 by Paul Stewart Chris Riddell
All right reserved.

ISBN: 0552548499

Chapter One

·chapter one·

Dawn Patrol

It was cold in the great chamber; bitter cold. Above, through the frost-edged panes of the glass dome overhead, the stars glittered like phraxdust in the black sky. Below, at the large ring-shaped ironwood table, a hulking figure was hunched over a sheaf of sky charts, a carved tankard in front of him, and an upturned telescope by the foot of his chair. Loud snores echoed through the chamber as the figure's head slumped slowly forwards, a red gobbet of spittle bubbling on his lips.

The sky charts rustled like dead leaves as they were caught by an icy draught whistling through the chamber. The academic shivered in his sleep and the light clink of a phraxdust medallion tapping the heavy chain of office round his neck mingled with his snores.

He slumped further forward, cheeks wobbling and neck creasing into plump, grublike layers of fat. The dangling phraxdust medallion knocked against the rim of the all but empty tankard. The snores were deep and rumbling now and, as the sleeper's jowly face hovered over the table, the medallion hung down inside the tankard.

All at once, with a volcanic snore, the sagging figure fell completely forwards. He slammed his forehead on the edge of the table with a thud - and sat bolt upright. In front of him, there was a hiss, a crackle, a whiff of toasted wood-almonds - and the tankard abruptly exploded.

The academic was thrown back from his chair. He landed heavily on the other side of the chamber, twisting a leg and knocking his head sharply against the tiled floor.

From high above, like a faulty echo, there came an answering sound of breaking glass and an ear-splitting crash, as something hard and heavy burst through the dome and landed in the middle of the ironwood table, splitting it in two.

The academic coughed throatily as he heaved himself painfully to his feet. The air was thick with dust and smoke. His head throbbed, his ears were ringing, and wherever he looked, the after-image of the explosion flashed before him; now pink, now green. He coughed again and again, great convulsions racking his body.

At last the coughing subsided, and he fumbled for a spidersilk kerchief and wiped his streaming eyes. Above his head, he saw that several of the glass panels had shattered in the blast. At his feet, the jagged fragments glinted in the moonlight. He frowned as his gaze fell on the object nestling amongst the shards of glass and splinters of wood. It was a stone head dislodged from one of the statues on the roof, the thick frost coating its surface already melting and dripping down onto the floor.

Who is it this time? the academic wondered. Which venerable figure of rank has taken a tumble tonight?

He crouched down, seized the slippery head with both hands, rolled it over - and gasped with sudden foreboding. It was his own face staring back at him.

Although it was close to midnight, with the full moon dull and greasy yellow behind the thickening mist, the air - even high up at the top of the Tower of Night - was still clammy and warm. The Most High Guardian, Orbix Xaxis, emerged onto the main upper gantry, looked round uneasily, and began at once to fiddle urgently with the metal muzzle that covered his mouth and nose.

With the vents closed by spidersilk gauze, Orbix's face sweated beneath the mask and his voice took on a muffled and rasping tone - but at least it protected him from the vile contagion of the night. The High Guardian clicked the muzzle-guard securely into place. When the great purifying storm finally arrived, he thought with quiet satisfaction, the air would be fit to breathe again, but until that glorious day . . .

'The chosen ones await your bidding, master,' came a gruff voice behind him.

Orbix turned. The cage-master, Mollus Leddix, stood before him. Behind him, flanked by hulking flathead Guardians, were two young librarians, their faces white and drawn. One, a shock of ginger hair matted by a gash in his eyebrow, tried to stand up straight, but the muscles in his jaw betrayed his fear. His companion, smaller and slightly hunched, stared with pale blue eyes at his feet. Their arms were tied behind their backs.

Orbix thrust his muzzle into the smaller one's face, and took a long, deep sniff. A tear squeezed out from the librarian's eyelashes and slid down his cheek.

'Very good,' said Orbix at last. 'Sweet. Tender . . . Caught them in the sewers, did you?'

'One of them, master,' Leddix nodded. 'The other was shot down over Undertown.'

Orbix Xaxis tutted. 'You librarians,' he said softly. 'Will you never learn that it is we, the Guardians of Night, who are the masters?' He nodded to the flatheads. 'Put them in the cage,' he growled. 'And remove their gags. I want to hear them sing.'

The flatheads tore the knotted rope from the prisoners' mouths and bundled them to the end of the jutting gantry, where a heavy cage hung down from an overhead pulley. One of the Guardians opened the barred door. Another shoved the prisoners inside. The ginger-haired librarian stood stock-still, his head held high. Beside him, his companion followed his example.

Orbix snorted. They were all the same, these young librarians. Trying so hard to be brave, to hide their fear - he had yet to meet a single one prepared to plead for his life. A cold fury gripped him. They would be singing soon enough.

'Lower the cage,' he barked.

Leddix gave a signal, and a Guardian stepped forward, released the locking-bolt on the crank-wheel, and began turning. With a lurch, the cage began its long descent. Orbix Xaxis raised his arms and lifted his head. The moonlight glinted on his mask and tinted glasses.

'Thus perish all those who pollute the Great Sky with blasphemous flight!' his rasping voice rang out. 'For we, the Guardians, shall purify the Sky, ready for that Great Night. Hail, the Great Storm!'

The gantry filled with voices raised in salute. 'Hail, the Great Storm! Hail, the Great Storm!'

Far below them now, the cage continued down. Past the dark angular Tower of Night it went; past the surface of the crumbling Sanctaphrax rock and the vast network of scaffolding erected to support it, and on down into Screetown.

Inside the cage, the two librarians struggled to keep their balance as they stared out.

'Try not to look down,' said the ginger-haired one.

'I . . . I can't,' said his companion. 'I saw something down there in the darkness . . . Waiting . . .'

Created when massive chunks of stone had broken off from the crumbling Sanctaphrax rock, fallen and crushed the area of Undertown directly beneath, Screetown was a rubble-strewn wilderness. Every building had been demolished, every street destroyed, while the weight of the immense boulders crashing down was so great that the shock waves had opened up gaping canyons in the ground.

It was into the deepest of these canyons that the librarians were being lowered. All at once, the cage jerked to a standstill. The two young librarians fell against the bars of the cage as, far above their heads, the voice of the High Guardian rang out.

'Come, Demons of the Deep!' he cried. 'And rid the Sky of its polluters!' He turned to Leddix. 'Release them,' he hissed.

From the Hardcover edition.

Excerpted from Vox by Paul Stewart Illustrated by Chris Riddell 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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Vox (The Edge Chronicles Series #6) 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 19 reviews.
harstan More than 1 year ago
Relatively young Librarian Knight Rook Barkwater flying the Stormhornet completes his aerial patrol of the Edge that overlooks the Edgewater River. He begins to head back to the library to report the usual strange lights in the sky and mutants in Screetown, but observes columns of Shrykes on Great Mire Road as if the aviary creatures were preparing for war. However before he attains the haven of the Library, he hears a roaring noise and suddenly Stormhornet spins out of control. He crashes in Screetown where his escape fails and he becomes a prisoner............... He is taken to the sunken Palace of the Statues, home or prison depending on one¿s view of the fallen tyrant Vox Verlix. Though exiled and not remotely like the greatest librarian of all times, Vox remains a force to be reckoned with albeit no one believes that. He warns his former compatriots that a storm is coming, but will they listen to an insane fallen one? Though Rook believes him having observed the lucid moments of his ¿host¿, what can he do even if he manages to escape being somewhat a novice.................. Fans of Potter will enjoy the Edge Chronicles especially the books containing the adventures of Rook (see LAST OF THE SKYPIRATES). Rook is a terrific lead character who holds the tale in focus, but Vox is the fascinating one as the audience will wonder whether he warns out of duty or spite. Though this tale can stand alone, most fans will find it even better by reading at least beforehand LAST OF THE SKYPIRATES to gain a better understanding of motives and how far Rook has come. Still this is a fine edge of the seat young adult fantasy thriller............ Harriet Klausner
Guest More than 1 year ago
We all no Vox from Midnight over Santaphrax(Book 3). This bad guy is the next villain in front of Rook. Twig and his crew were brought back to life by the magic of Riverrise, so we might see them. Or, Wingnut, Tarp and the rest might just decide to stay at riverise, happy. But we know one thing, Rook will triumph. But if we know Stewart and riddel, expect someone to die in this pivitol book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Like all the edge books this book is a thrilling, fun, and a great add-on to the edge cronicles, this is one of my favorite books, read it if you like suspense intregue and adventure!
read4ever More than 1 year ago
This was the sixth Edge Chronicles book, and like it's predecessors, it was a great read! Filled with breath-taking suspense, mind-boggling mystery, and hard-to-believe situations, "Vox" was another installment in this fantastic fantasy series that has been captivating and will continue to captivate readers of all ages!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Bored im a girl
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Guest More than 1 year ago
The dangerous shyrks, the fearful goblins, and the looming terror of the Gurdians of Night. And then, the obese Vox, sitting in his tower, drinking eternity for eternity, he's not dangerous, not fearful, their is no reason to be afraid of the so called 'Most High Acadamie of Sanctaphrax', Or is their? Is their a reson to suspect Vox Verlix? Is he a fat drunkard or an evil mastermind who now plans a plan so evil, so wonderfully unsuspecting that it could destroy all his enimies in one blow. Then their is Rook Barkwater, a librarian knight. Can he save Undertown, or set off the evil contraption himself and destroy the town, along with the hundreds of undertowners and librarians with it? Find out. Read it. And see for yourself. Gandalf the Green.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I really liked this book. It was kind of slow in the beginning compared to the others but overall it was good. I really miss the original main character Twig. I hope to see the author bring twig and his old crew back into this series because it needs another spark of life. We still don't know what happened to the old crew of that sky pirate ship.
Guest More than 1 year ago
i loved this book it was awesome but i miss reading about the beautiful deep woods and sky pirates! oh and the Bander bears i loved them but in this book the only ones you met were in the sewers! i hope the edge gets cured soon!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Im here. ~ bloodflower
Guest More than 1 year ago
It's great.