Thursday, October 17, 2013
How to Catch a Bogle by Catherine Jinks
Quick Thoughts: A big dose of Ghostbusters + little dose of Sherlock Holmes + 1870s London, England = one of my favorite books of the year!
I've had an *amazing* month of reading this month! I've made it a point to at least attempt keeping my focus on "odd" books. It's paid off! I don't think I've ever read this many books I enjoyed so much in one month. Even so, THIS one is still my favorite of the month so far. I'll have to read some amazing books through the remainder of the year for this one to not be on my list of favorites of the year!
I can't recommend this one to ALL of my readers. Most of you, yes. I think you'll love it. Despite being a middle grade book, it's very mature, in my opinion, and I think even fans of YA will end up loving it. It is dark, and a bit creepy at times. I'd say it's more suspenseful than horror. If I'd read the description before grabbing it, I most likely wouldn't have read it. I would have missed out, though.
Birdie McAdams is a 10 year old bogler's girl. She's an apprentice to Alfred, which is a bogler. Together they catch and kill the bogles that have been hiding and feeding on children. (A bogle is a monster or bogeyman.)They're very poor and they depend on each job to put food in their stomachs and to keep Alfred's brandy flask full. Things start changing when Miss Eames arrives in the picture, though!
Seriously! I loved this book! I didn't want to put it down and pretty much flew through it. It's mysterious enough that I couldn't wait to see what happened next. There were a few characters I kept going back and forth on what side they were working for. I thought it was a well written, challenging book for young readers. There is a bit of content I could have done without, especially considering this is a middle grade book, but otherwise it was wonderful.
One part of me was disappointed to learn this is the first in a trilogy. I don't want to have to wait 2 years to finish the series. Almost nothing bugs me more than having to wait that long to finish a story. ;) On the other hand, I'm thrilled there will be more to Birdie and Alfred's story.
If you don't mind a bit of "street" language and lifestyle,(They live on the streets of 1870s London. They talk a little rough at times.) and a brief stroll through the creepy lane, I *highly* recommend you give this one a chance!
There is some mild profanity throughout. There are a couple of curses to Hell...one of which is a plea for God to send the person there. To kill the bogles, things such as salt and "holy water" are used. Children are being eaten, so there's lots of murders, but no details as far as I remember. (I know! It sounds much worse here than while reading, though, I assure you!)
*I was provided an ARC in exchange for my honest opinion.