Title: Barnaby Grimes: Return of the Emerald Skull (Barnaby Grimes bk. 2)
Author(s): Paul Stewart & Chris Riddell
Reading Level: 11 and up
Summary: Barnaby Grimes is a tick-tock lad, running errands in his city, day and night, and high-stacking around the rooftops in search of new mysteries to solve. This is a fantastic romp through a Dickensian-style city, with a wonderful new hero in the guise of Barnaby.
After collecting a strange parcel from a deserted ship in the fog of the docks, and delivering it to the local schoolmaster, Barnaby thinks he’s earned a moment to sit on the rooftops and eat his favorite pastry. But soon he realizes that all is not well at the school—but is the problem quite as he expects it? A gruesome tale of a school overrun by a terrible curse—who will survive?
My Review: I've never understood why this book is called the Return of the emerald skull since this is it's first appearance. Anyway, as to my review, I've read the first book in this series Curse of the Night Wolf and thought it was a nice creepy adventurous fare. I've always thought Mr. Stewart and Riddell always knew how to pile on the suspense and action. This one however was a bit of a disappointment. I didn't think it had as much action as it could have, in fact it lagged a bit in the middle. The horror element also was not very scary, but it did remind me a bit of Lord of the Flies one of my favorite books. Most of the character are interesting and likable(well not the bad guys) but they couldn't save the book for me.
Content: bloody violence, and scary situations
Rating: 2 stars out of 5