Skulduggery Pleasant by Derek Landy
Genre: Fantasy, Teenage Fiction, Horror[rating=5]
On looking at the cover of this book, I can honestly say that I wasn’t very impressed (and I know judging a book by it’s cover is generally looked down on), but honestly – a skeleton in a suit holding fire in its hand? It was an interesting concept at the least, but it looked very… shall we say, teenage-boy ish? A friend recommended it to me though, and they’d raved about it, so I decided to give it a shot.
Boy was I glad that I did, I was hooked practically from page one. It starts off with a death, as all mystery books should, specifically the death of our main character Stephanie’s uncle. Only a few pages in we meet a mysterious figure, and the adventures begin from there. Stephanie’s thrown into a hidden world of magic, danger and a whole lot of sarcasm, specifically from our skeleton friend from the cover, one Mr. Skulduggery Pleasant: “wise-cracking detective, powerful magician, sworn enemy of evil. Oh yes, and dead.”
I can see now that my first impressions of this book were incredibly judgmental, as this book and indeed the series, has become one of my favourite series of all time. Derek Landy has a way of writing that keeps you interested and on your toes, yet I found myself laughing all the way through. The interactions between Stephanie and Skulduggery, and most other characters too, are filled with wit, humor and astounding comedic timing. There are currently seven books in the series, and one short story, all of which are proudly displayed on my bookshelf at home, each adventure more dangerous and heart-stopping than the last, as Stephanie is pulled (somewhat willingly) deeper and deeper into Ireland’s very core of magic, threatened at every turn by villains more evil and cunning than she could have imagined.
An extremely fantastic book, one I laughed my way through, and recommended for any age – even my mother enjoyed it. Skulduggery Pleasant is hilarious, brilliantly written and guaranteed to keep you interested until the very last page.