‘Adventures are unpredictable and often terribly badly behaved – a bit like pickled onions if you’ve ever tried to fork one on a plate – but they have a way of unlocking people and turning them upside down so that all the astonishing things fizzing around inside them start to tumble out…’
Eleven-year-old Casper Tock hates risks, is allergic to adventures and shudders at the thought of unpredictable events. So, it comes as a nasty shock to him when he accidentally stumbles into Rumblestar, an Unmapped Kingdom full of magical beasts.
All Casper wants is to find a way home, but Rumblestar is in trouble. An evil harpy called Morg is sending her followers, the Midnights, into the kingdom to wreak havoc and pave the way for her to steal the Unmapped magic for herself. But Casper cannot turn a blind eye because the future of his own world, he discovers, is bound up with that of the Unmapped Kingdoms.
And so, together with Utterly Thankless, a girl who hates rules and is allergic to behaving, and her miniature dragon, Arlo, Casper embarks upon an adventure full of cloud giants, storm ogres and drizzle hags. Can he, Utterly and Arlo, the unlikeliest of heroes, save the Unmapped Kingdoms and our world from the clutches of Morg and her Midnights?
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I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
4.5 stars for a brilliantly fun book! Rumblestar is everything a proper adventure story should be – full of smiles and scares, and friends and foes, and wit and weirdness.
Casper is a very uptight little boy, and seems almost scared of his own shadow, but when he stumbles into a different world, he finds out lots about himself. How to make friends and how to be brave. How to save the world. I loved his journey – his coming into himself felt a little fast but otherwise perfect.
And Utterly is amazing! She made me laugh at her grumpiness. And, obviously, I need an Arlo. Badly. And a balloon, for that matter. Casper and the balloon were just amazing, I hope they have more adventures together 😂
I also loved all the side characters, all the different people who make the unmapped kingdoms work. The hags were fantastic, and so grouchy! And I loved the trolls too. We don’t actually see Morg in this, the “baddie”, but her midnights are properly great creatures.
Obviously there is a pinch of narnia to this, but it’s more in the travel between worlds than anything else. And I loved the concept of the unmapped kingdoms, and the start of the world. It’s just fantastic. It does work well if you have read Everdark, Elphinstone’s world book day short story, but I don’t think you need to for this to make perfect sense. There’s some great crosses between the stories but it’s very well done.
I highly recommend this if you want some MG fantasy, you won’t regret it.
Buy Rumblestar from Amazon UK.