4 out of 4 stars
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What a delightful read this one was! Stephan's writing is so satisfying, on so many levels, that it's hard to know where to start the praise. First, I didn't find even a single grammar or spelling error in the entire book, which is a rare thing for the books I read. ( I read a lot of Kindle Unlimited books for free, and yes, you DO get what you pay for- at least sometimes.)
This story is aimed at a young adult or precocious child-level reader, with no sex, swear words (yay!) and minimum graphic descriptions of the violence that happens in the story. However, it is fully satisfying for an old curmudgeon like myself, so I would say it has a wide audience appeal.
The story is an action adventure, with characters from a neighboring fantasy world being thrust into modern England, in the Cheltenham area. The heroes, Stig and Meg, find English life to be exciting and very curious as they battle their way through a great number of adventures, chasing clues to battle the evil Anet, who seeks to destroy the neighboring world. The villain's motives are as old as time, greed for money and power being the foremost, and you will hardly feel sorry for the evil wench when she meets her well deserved end.
The writing of this story is colorful, the scenes vivid enough to easily see in the reader's mind, and there is a fairy tale feeling as well, in the sense that fairy tales seem somehow symbolic, archetypal, and relevant to the ordinary world in a larger scope of meaning. I was reminded of many of my favorite authors, from the brothers Grimm to Madeleine L'Engle to J.K. Rowling.
The storyline is appealing for its action-packed pace, and I particularly like the rhythm of that pace, slowing down to let the characters rest and learn, and then speeding off into car, train, and airplane chases. The author invents many amusing words, and names his characters in ways that appeal to my sense of humor as well. Stig and Meg manage to mangle so many words into such laughable shape- for example, helicopter becomes smellycopter. I don't want to give away any of the other delights to be found, so read it yourself.
I heartily endorse this book, and hope many others will enjoy it as much as I did.
I rate this book 4 out of 4 stars.
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