Hey! I decided to do a book review this week for two reasons - a) I haven't done one in ages and b) This is to good a book to miss!
It is 1857. 8-year-old Jaffy Brown is running along a street in London's East End when he comes face to face with an escaped circus animal. Plucked from the jaws of death by Mr Jamrach - explorer, entrepreneur and collector of the world's strangest creatures - the two strike up a friendship. Before he knows it, Jaffy finds himself on board a ship bound for the Dutch East Indies with his best friend Tim, on an unusual commission for Mr Jamrach. His journey - if he survives it - will push faith, love and friendship to their utmost limits.
Genre - I honestly have no idea! Adventure maybe?
Author - Carol Birch
Rating - 5/5
WARNING - READ ONLY IF AGE 13+
My gran bought me this book when I was staying with her, and when I first saw it, I was unimpressed. I don't usually read this type of book - adult adventure - so, I started it reluctantly. A few pages in, however, and I was engrossed.
The first thing I need to say about the book, is that the blurb doesn't give it credit. When I first picked the book up, I was thinking that an 8-year-old would go on said adventure - wrong. Jaffy, the main character, is introduced to Mr Jamrach (the guy that collects animals to sell to zoos) when he was 8, but he doesn't go on the trip until he is 15. This didn't make much of a difference though, and a reader can adjust to it pretty quickly.
The other thing about the blurb is that it makes the book sound, well, boring. It is everything but boring! There are dragons, whales, sailors, rum, swashbuckling fun and dangerous undertones. It is simply a fantastic book! It is written very well, showing Jaffy's feelings throughout, with superb descriptions and language.
The one thing I would mark the author down for though, is the swearing. I admit it, there is some swearing in the book, along with alcohol and prostitutes. These appear very little in the book though, and it is an adult book, so Carol birch cannot be blamed. Just remember though, if you're going to read it, be ready for strong language!
All in all, this is an amazing book, perfect for anyone who enjoys adventure, or any genre for that matter.
Amazon - Varies in price but round about £5.00