'She’s Molly flipping Thompson – she investigates everything!'
I've been waiting especially until Halloween to share my review of the fantastically spooky The Ghouls of Howlfair by Nick Tomlinson with you as I've made this my Halloween highlight of 2019, and when better than Halloween to share it with you!
The Ghouls of Howlfair tells the thrillingly fun story of young historian and bookworm Molly Thompson and the creepy legends surrounding her hometown of Howlfair. But when these legends start coming true, Molly and her friends – scatty Lowry and guardian-cat Gabriel – become covert monster-hunters to keep Howlfair safe. With everyone in the touristy town becoming increasingly suspicious, is someone secretly trying to summon Howlfair’s mythical monster, and if so, can Molly and her – gang save the town before it’s too late!
Undead fiends, werewolves and monsters, ghouls and ghosts… The Ghouls of Howlfair is a spooktacular children’s book like no other, and one that isn’t just for Halloween!
Tomlinson’s way with words is as distinctly profound as it is refreshingly hilarious! With monstrously gripping descriptions, witty dialogue and deliciously rewarding cliff-hangers, Tomlinson has cleverly crafted a full on page-turning frenzy! Pitching the perfect amount of twists and turns, with equal laugh out loud moments, I ate up Ghouls in all its ghostly gloriousness.
Molly, a young budding Sherlock Holmes, or better yet, a Buffy Summers (!) is as feisty and brave, as she is openly vulnerable and awkward. Her obsessive thirst for history and mystery so brilliantly consumes her character that there’s literally nothing she wouldn’t do to solve a creepy legend; or, as Lowry so brilliantly puts it, ‘she’s Molly flipping Thompson – she investigates everything!’
There are so many truly great and iconic girls of literature – Matilda and Pippi Longstocking, Jo March and Lyra Belacqua to name just a few. For me, the daringly, determined Molly Thompson lives amongst these legends now, with no doubt that she’ll become a timeless character of children’s fiction.
The cast of eccentric characters which Tomlinson has so skilfully put together gives a second heart to the narrative that so easily weaves between the spooky and the scary.
It would be here in my review that I’d write of my desperation to know that a sequel will be quick to follow the footsteps of this eerily, gripping book, but I was lucky enough to get the chance to interview the brilliant Nick Tomlinson and I got the answer I was hoping for…