Bound To Stay Bound

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School Library Journal - 10/01/2013 Gr 5–8—This sequel to The Peculiar (HarperCollins, 2012) is an enthralling read in its own right, but even better for those acquainted with the first book. Bachmann combines the pleasures of a Dickensian cast of characters with the eldritch qualities of British faerie lore and adds a touch of steampunk to entice readers into an alternate universe in which the English are on the verge of war with the fay. Pikey Thomas is an urchin who's been "fairy-touched," which has left him with one eye that can see into the Old Country, but also endangers him in a society that is hostile to anything connected to faeries. Moreover, his real eye seems to be on a pendant around the neck of Hettie, the little girl who was captured by faeries in The Peculiar. Her brother, Bartholomew, has been trying to rescue her ever since and, when he comes across Pikey in a London prison, he effects the boy's release and enlists his aid. Bachmann writes with unnerving assurance for someone so young. (He was still in his teens when he completed the two books.) He describes an army camp: "It spilled out of the huddle of low stone houses like intestines from a goat's belly." The breathtaking beauty of his prose is coupled with a plot that also leaves his audience breathless.—Miriam Lang Budin, Chappaqua Library, NY - Copyright 2013 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.

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