Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Review: The Singular & Extraordinary Tale of Mirror & Goliath by Ishbelle Bee

The Singular & Extraordinary Tale of Mirror & Goliath
Author:  Ishbelle Bee
Series:  From the Peculiar Adventures of John Lovehart, Esq., Volume 1
Publisher:  Angry Robot Books, June 30, 2015 (North America Print)
       June 2, 2015 (eBook)
       June 4, 2015 (UK Print)
Format:  Trade Paperback and eBook, 336 pages
List Price:  $9.99 (print)
ISBN:  9780857664426 (print)
Review Copy:  Provided by the Publisher

1888. A little girl called Mirror and her extraordinary shape-shifting guardian Goliath Honeyflower are washed up on the shores of Victorian England. Something has been wrong with Mirror since the day her grandfather locked her inside a mysterious clock that was painted all over with ladybirds. Mirror does not know what she is, but she knows she is no longer human.

John Loveheart, meanwhile, was not born wicked. But after the sinister death of his parents, he was taken by Mr Fingers, the demon lord of the underworld. Some say he is mad. John would be inclined to agree.

Now Mr Fingers is determined to find the little girl called Mirror, whose flesh he intends to eat, and whose soul is the key to his eternal reign. And John Loveheart has been called by his otherworldly father to help him track Mirror down…

An extraordinary dark fairytale for adults, for fans of Catherine Valente and Neil Gaiman.

File Under: Fantasy [ Shapes Shifting / Inside the Clock / A Tasty Little Girl / 12 Dancing Princesses ]

Melanie's Review

This book is very difficult to explain but a must read for anyone who likes the unusual. In true gothic/horror style Bee tells the story of Mirror who as a young girl was almost murdered by her grandfather when he leaves her to die in a grandfather clock. She is rescued by the policeman Goliath Honeyflower who becomes her protector, guardian and companion. Mirror is no longer just a normal young girl and Goliath searches for answers as to what she has become. We also learn of the life of young John Loveheart whose family are cruelly murdered and he is taken by the demon Mr. Fingers to live in the underworld along with 13 other young boys. Mr. Fingers wants to eat Mirror and sends John Loveheart to find her. I could tell you more but that would spoil the story.

Bee has written one of the creepiest books I have ever read. Well done! She has also managed to create some fantastically evil characters that were quite frankly a delight to read about. The story is told from a number of different POVs including those of Mirror and John Loveheart which gives us a different perspective of the overall story. Bee also has a fantastic imagination especially when it comes to naming her characters. At the start it seemed like it was going to be a very quick read but due to the plot, the colourful characters and the different environment in which the story is staged I found I had to give myself some more time to read it. I didn't want to miss any of Bee's crazy and compelling story. This is an excellent debut and I look forward to reading more from this author. If you are a fan of the strange and unusual you won't want to miss out.


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