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Monday, 27 June 2016

Review: Knights of the Borrowed Dark by Dave Rudden



Denizen Hardwick doesn't believe in magic - until he's ambushed by a monster created from shadows and sees it destroyed by a word made of sunlight.

That kind of thing can really change your perspective.

Now Denizen is about to discover that there's a world beyond the one he knows. A world of living darkness where an unseen enemy awaits.

Fortunately for humanity, between us and the shadows stand the Knights of the Borrowed Dark.

Unfortunately for Denizen, he's one of them . . .







Reading the above blurb you might think that you have seen all of this before. And in some ways you'd be right. Knights of the Borrowed Dark is chock full of the tropes that we have come to know so well in middle grade fiction since Harry Potter burst onto the scene:
  • orphaned protagonist? Check
  • said orphan has a pretty miserable life? Check
  • sudden appearance of a previously unknown relative? Check
  • relative is part of a secret society that protects the world from dark magic? Check
The list goes on and on, but the incredible thing is that debut writer Dave Rudden weaves them into his story with such mastery that you could be forgiven for thinking that he was breaking completely new ground. This is a seriously good debut novel, from the first line of its ├╝ber-creepy prologue, right the way through to its kick-ass ending.

Aside from his obvious ability to write a damn enjoyable story, the quality of Dave Rudden's descriptive writing is the best I have read from a debut writer for years. Knights of the Borrowed Dark is a masterclass in writing for a middle grade audience, or any audience for that matter. Open up the book at pretty much any page and a quick scan will reward you with one of the many vivid descriptions that add detail to his world-building, and further richness and atmosphere to the exciting narrative. And these descriptions are invariably brief and impactful, and never at the cost of pace. I'd love to include a few of these in my review, but my copy is an uncorrected proof so I'm not permitted to do so.

Knights of the Borrowed Dark is written for the 9+ audience, but there is a darkness to the story that may be a little too much for some. The violence within is of the fantasy kind, but may put off some parents. The nature of the villains and the way that monsters come out of the dark, may affect children of a delicate disposition or who are prone to nightmares. The villains of the piece, known as The Clockwork Three, could have come straight out of the world of the Cenobites of the Hellraiser movies, especially the lightbulb-eating woman in white. However, the story also shows that through courage and friendship, light can and will overcome the darkness.

I've not written may reviews this year, and as I mentioned in a previous post, I have been experiencing something of a reading slump as far as children's books are concerned so I have not read as many this year as I might have in the past. However, of the ones that I have read, this is most definitely one of the best and already a strong contender for my book of the year. It has everything that I personally want in a fantasy action adventure story, and it is the kind of book that, had it been published when I was a child, I would have read over and over and over again. My thanks go to the wonderful people at Penguin Random House for sending me a copy.





14 comments:

  1. Actually, the book seems to be out already - certainly in iBooks, Australian page, so you could probably quote more if you wanted. Never mind, it sounds good. Thanks for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
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    2. Hello friends my name is Tonya Smith i live in USA,Am over whelmed of what DR. OCUSODO. did for me he brought back my love who left for 1 year ago without notice, i have been looking for how to get this boy back to my life because i love this boy with the whole of my heart, i could not replace him with any body,one day i was watching my television when i saw a lady giving thanks to him and telling the world how he helped her i was so shocked i could not believe it because i never taught that there are powers that can bring back lost love, then that was how i decided to contact him too because i do really need my love back,when i contacted him i told him everything and he told me not to worry that my love will surely be back to my arms within 24hours at first i could not believe because i was thinking how could somebody that has gone for 1 year ago come back within 24 hours,so then i decided to watch and see,unbelievable within the next 24hours i heard a call from unknown number so i decided to pick the call the next thing i could hear was my loves voice he was pleading and begging me on the phone that i should forgive him that i should forget all that have happened that he did not know what came over him,he promised not to leave for any reason, that he was really sorry for what he did,i was so surprised because i never believed that this could happen,so that was how i accepted his apology and the next morning he came to my house and still pleading for me to forgive him i told him that everything is okay that i have forgiven him, that was how we started again and now we are married, i promised to say this testimony in radio station, commenting this testimony is still okay but before this week runs out i promise to say this in radio station and i will,sir thank you very much.World please am begging you people to try and thank this man for me,or if you need his help here is his email address: drocusodospellcaster@gmail.com or drocusodospellcaster@yahoo.com his contact number +2349047457724.

      Delete
    3. Am writing this article to thank Dr. Keke Odin for the wondrous miracle that he did for me because he helped me recently to bring back my Ex Wife. Thank you sir for your genuine spells. This is really incredible,I have never experienced anything like this in my life. Before i met you Sir, i have tried every possible means that i could to get my wife back, but i actually came to realize that nothing was working out for me, and that my wife had developed lot of hatred for me.. I thought there was no hope to reunite with my wife. But when i read good reviews about how Dr. Keke help others get back there ex lovers, make others to win big on lottery, cure of any sickness. I decided to give it a try and i did everything that he instructed me and i Trusted him and followed his instructions just as he guaranteed me in 48 hours, and that was exactly when my wife called me and come back to me.. I'm so happy for the good work you did for me. We are more contented now than ever. Everything looks perfect and so natural! Thank you so much Sir for your authentic and indisputable spells. Email him now for help greatkekespelltemple@gmail.com or call +1 386-336-9876 . Thanks Sir for your help. once again his email address is
      greatkekespelltemple@gmail.com
      call him on: +1 386-336-9876


      Am writing this article to thank Dr. Keke Odin for the wondrous miracle that he did for me because he helped me recently to bring back my Ex Wife. Thank you sir for your genuine spells. This is really incredible,I have never experienced anything like this in my life. Before i met you Sir, i have tried every possible means that i could to get my wife back, but i actually came to realize that nothing was working out for me, and that my wife had developed lot of hatred for me.. I thought there was no hope to reunite with my wife. But when i read good reviews about how Dr. Keke help others get back there ex lovers, make others to win big on lottery, cure of any sickness. I decided to give it a try and i did everything that he instructed me and i Trusted him and followed his instructions just as he guaranteed me in 48 hours, and that was exactly when my wife called me and come back to me.. I'm so happy for the good work you did for me. We are more contented now than ever. Everything looks perfect and so natural! Thank you so much Sir for your authentic and indisputable spells. Email him now for help greatkekespelltemple@gmail.com or call +1 386-336-9876 . Thanks Sir for your help. once again his email address is
      greatkekespelltemple@gmail.com
      call him on: +1 386-336-9876

      Delete
  2. Open up the e book at quite a lot any web page and a brief scan will reward you with one of the many bright descriptions that add element to his global-building, I'm working at Outdoor Advertising Services in Kanpur and similarly richness and ecosystem to the exciting narrative. And those descriptions are continuously brief and impact, and by no means on the fee of pace.

    ReplyDelete
  3. This article is dedicated to the Doctor Osemu Okpamen. I have been married with my wife for 5 years and recently she broke up with me and it hurt me deeply when she told me to leave her alone and that she does not love me anymore when i was always faithful and honest to her. I tried all the ways to get her back buying her what she wants like i always did and she still left me heart broken and she even has a new boyfriend which destroyed me even more until a friend of mine from high school directed me to this genuine spell Doctor called Osemu Okpamen. This man changed my life completely. I followed everything he told me to do and my wife came back begging for me back. I was stunned everything happened exactly like he told me. I had faith in everything he told me and everything was true. Also he was there every moment until i got my happiness back. You could contact him via email at { Doctorokpamenspelltemple@yahoo.com } or reach him on +1 (914)-517-3229.

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  4. Take a step into a world of darkness and fire - Dave Rudden's debut novel grabs you from the first sentence until the end like a slice of freshly baked chocolate cake, the first taste is mouth-wateringly good, and all too soon you'll find yourself licking the crumbs off the plate, desperate for more!

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  5. Hello
    I'm so excited share this testimony, i sincerely hope my post gets read and hopefully helps somebody along the line my husband took my case to court for a divorce. he said that he never wanted to stay with me again, and that he didn’t love me anymore. So he packed out of the house and made me and my children passed through severe pain. I tried all my possible means to get him back, after much begging but all to no avail and he confirmed it that he has made his decision and he never wanted to see me again. So on one evening as i was coming back from work i met an old friend of mine who asked of my husband. So i explained every thing to her so she told me that the only way i can get my husband back, is to visit a great spell caster called Dr Ahmed utimate, who has really worked for her too to get her husband. So i never believed in spell but i had no other choice than to follow her advice. Then she gave me the email address of the spell caster, So the next morning i sent a mail to the address she gave to me and the spell caster assured me that i will get my husband back the next day. What an amazing statement!! I never believed so he spoke with me and told me everything that i need to do. Then the next morning So surprisingly my husband who didn’t call me for the past seven months gave me a call to inform me that he was coming back. So Amazing!! So that was how he came back that same day with lots of love and joy, he apologized for his mistake and for the pain he caused me and my children. Then from that day our relationship was now stronger than how it were before, So i will advice you out there if you have any problem contact Prophet Dr Ahmed utimate he is real and always ready to help you solve your problem Email him at: Ahmedutimate@gmail.com or call/whatsapp: +2348160153829

    ReplyDelete
  6. Hello Every One Out Here
    I'm from United States North Bergen(US). I read some testimony about Dr. Iyaryi on how he has helped people in bringing back there ex within 48 hours i was just thinking if that was real,And decided to call a lady who made a testimony and also dropped her number,So i called her and ask her about Dr. Iyaryi she said Dr. Iyaryi is a trustworthy man and he his ready to bring back my lover for me,i was just so happy and a little bit relief that my lover will be back to me soon,Then i decided in contacting Dr. Iyaryi which i did,And before i could share him my problem he has already told me what i came for,And he said everything will be okay within 48 hours that my lover will be back to my arms,So he said he would be casting the spell and that within 48 hours my lover would call me,So i hoped so truly before the 48 hours i got a call from a man who has left me for the past 6 years saying he is sorry and he wants me back,i was happy and i said i also want him back,Then i traveled to Canada to meet him up,And he apologized for what he has done to me now he proposed to marry me and we are both preparing for our wedding soon,All thanks to the great and World best spell caster, Dr. Iyaryi His private mail driayaryi2012@hotmail.com you can also add Dr. Iyaryi on whatsApp +2349057915709

    ReplyDelete
  7. Hello friends my name is Tonya Smith i live in USA,Am over whelmed of what DR. OCUSODO. did for me he brought back my love who left for 1 year ago without notice, i have been looking for how to get this boy back to my life because i love this boy with the whole of my heart, i could not replace him with any body,one day i was watching my television when i saw a lady giving thanks to him and telling the world how he helped her i was so shocked i could not believe it because i never taught that there are powers that can bring back lost love, then that was how i decided to contact him too because i do really need my love back,when i contacted him i told him everything and he told me not to worry that my love will surely be back to my arms within 24hours at first i could not believe because i was thinking how could somebody that has gone for 1 year ago come back within 24 hours,so then i decided to watch and see,unbelievable within the next 24hours i heard a call from unknown number so i decided to pick the call the next thing i could hear was my loves voice he was pleading and begging me on the phone that i should forgive him that i should forget all that have happened that he did not know what came over him,he promised not to leave for any reason, that he was really sorry for what he did,i was so surprised because i never believed that this could happen,so that was how i accepted his apology and the next morning he came to my house and still pleading for me to forgive him i told him that everything is okay that i have forgiven him, that was how we started again and now we are married, i promised to say this testimony in radio station, commenting this testimony is still okay but before this week runs out i promise to say this in radio station and i will,sir thank you very much.World please am begging you people to try and thank this man for me,or if you need his help here is his email address: drocusodospellcaster@gmail.com or drocusodospellcaster@yahoo.com his contact number +2349047457724.

    ReplyDelete
  8. drraymondspellcaster@gmail.com whatsapp +2348130183131
    Hello i am Adam Jose,i am from Houston,Texas.And am out here to spread this good news to the entire world on how i got my WIFE back.I was going crazy when my WIFE left me for another MAN last two months after one years of marriage,so i was confuse and even thinking of committing suicide.So one day i was just browsing through INTERNET and i met a friend that introduce me to Dr. Egodi the great messenger to the oracle that he serve,I narrated my problem to Dr Egodi about how my husband left me.He only said to me that i have come to the right place were i will be getting my heart desire without any side effect.He told me what i need to do,After it was done,In the next 2 days,My WIFE called me on the phone and was saying sorry for living me before now and also in the next one week after my WIFE called me to be pleading for forgiveness,I was called in the school where i work that am free that i should resume with work,I am so happy and overwhelmed that i have to tell this to the entire world on how Dr.Egodi help me grant my heart desire. If you need any kind of help contact Dr.Egodi at the following email address. [Drkennethraymond@outlook.com and get all your problem solve. No problem is too big for him to solve. Contact him direct on

    ReplyDelete
  9. drraymondspellcaster@gmail.com whatsapp +2348130183131
    Hello i am Adam Jose,i am from Houston,Texas.And am out here to spread this good news to the entire world on how i got my WIFE back.I was going crazy when my WIFE left me for another MAN last two months after one years of marriage,so i was confuse and even thinking of committing suicide.So one day i was just browsing through INTERNET and i met a friend that introduce me to Dr. Egodi the great messenger to the oracle that he serve,I narrated my problem to Dr Egodi about how my husband left me.He only said to me that i have come to the right place were i will be getting my heart desire without any side effect.He told me what i need to do,After it was done,In the next 2 days,My WIFE called me on the phone and was saying sorry for living me before now and also in the next one week after my WIFE called me to be pleading for forgiveness,I was called in the school where i work that am free that i should resume with work,I am so happy and overwhelmed that i have to tell this to the entire world on how Dr.Egodi help me grant my heart desire. If you need any kind of help contact Dr.Egodi at the following email address. [Drkennethraymond@outlook.com and get all your problem solve. No problem is too big for him to solve. Contact him direct on: [
    drraymondspellcaster@gmail.com whatsapp +2348130183131

    or drraymondspellcaster@gmail.com
    ] and get your problems solve like me.He also cast so many spell like,
    (1) If you want your ex back.
    (2) you need a divorce in your relationship.
    (3) You want to be promoted in your office.
    (4) You want women & men to run after you.
    (5) If you want a child.
    (6) You want to be rich.
    (7) You want to tie your husband & wife to be yours forever.
    (8) If you need financial assistance.
    (9) Herbal care.
    (10) You need a spell to cure your sickness
    (11) You need a lottery spell, You need money spell
    (12) Spiritual protection
    Contact him today on: [
    drraymondspellcaster@gmail.com

    ]

    ReplyDelete
  10. Hi everyone!!!HOW I GOT MY WIFE BACK/MY BABY WITH THE HELP OF Dr. AHMED
    I have being married to my wife for the past 3 years and 9 months we have obviously being living fine for those past few years. but the problem i was having was that i haven't being able to impregnate her because i thought i had a low sperm count,i had being visiting many hospital done various of test and samples but to no avail because all they could tell me was that am perfectly fine but i know that i am not fine my wife has being becoming impatient because i haven't being able to impregnate her after so many years. Things got worst each day, every seconds of my life i always think of what next to do because am being fed of me being incapable. i have come across so many health attendant who normally tell me that i have no problem. but i know that am sincerely not OK. One faithful evening when i came online in search of some people testified that he brought their Ex lover back, some testified that he restores womb, cure cancer, and other sickness, some testified that he can cast a spell to stop divorce and so on. i also come across one particular testimony, it was about a woman called Cora, she testified about how he brought back her Ex lover in less than 28 hours, he is the answer to all your problem. that is how they got help from Dr Ahmed, their wife back, how they got their husband back, how they got their low sperm on high rate with the help of Dr Ahmed i had to quickly get his email/phone number on line and contact him as soon as i could because i needed help urgently we had some talk and what i will do to get my self OK. he told me that all i had do is to get some items for purification and cleansing, i did all of those and thanks to Dr Ahmed am perfectly fine and my wife has given birth to Twins of the same sex all thanks to Dr Ahmed for his wonderful help... Contact.: E-mail: Ahmedutimate@gmail.com or call/Whats-app: +2348160153829.
    Curry Nathan from UK

    ReplyDelete