There's a storm brewing over Eerie-on-Sea, and the fisherfolk say a monster is the cause. Someone has woken the ancient Gargantis, who sleeps in the watery caves beneath this spooky seaside town where legends have a habit of coming to life. It seems the Gargantis is looking for something: a treasure stolen from her underwater lair. And it just might be in the Lost-and-Foundery at the Grand Nautilus Hotel, in the care of one Herbert Lemon, Lost-and-Founder. With the help of the daring Violet Parma, ever-reliable Herbie will do his best to figure out what the Gargantis wants and who stole her treasure in the first place. In a town full of suspicious, secretive characters, it could be anyone!
I have to say that Malamander was my favourite children's book of last year. I recommended it to everyone who'd be interested. I was eagerly looking forward to the release therefore of the sequel, Gargantis. There's a freshness about Thomas Taylor's writing yet it mingles with the past. I guess it's the sort of adventure book that was common years ago, but now given a new life in the modern world.
Gargantis is a wonderfully written. Like a storm, it sucks the reader in at the beginning and spits them out at the end, exhausted and wanting more. The adventure is permeated with humour and cultural references. The Star Wars one had me cackling aloud, as did the flux, sorry flow capacity and reversing the polarity. Eighties cult classic films being placed within the magical weird world of Eerie on Sea.
Eerie on Sea is just the place I'd love to holiday in. To me the Nautilus hotel conjures up the Grand Hotel in Scarborough. It's a wacky, yet magical world that any self-respecting tourist would be happy to visit. No trip of course to Eerie would be complete without visiting the mermonkey and getting him to dispense a book or two.
The story isn't predictable as well. There's enough in here to keep any adventure, fantasy fan happy. Not one but two maps, yes two! Each of them drawn in beautiful detail, they enhance the experience of this book. For someone who's found life a little tough at this moment, it really made me feel happy reading this wonderful book.
So, if you're aged over about eight, then you should buy this book (as well as Malamander). If you have a child, then it's an ideal book to read to them. Gargantis is one hell of a ride.