The combination of a fertile imagination for tales of terror and an artist’s skills, give Chris Priestley’s books massive appeal for young readers. This book is the second told in Maudlin Towers School and shares main characters with the other story in the series, creating a familiar feel. The setting is a boy’s Boarding School, with the characters Mildew and Sponge as the protagonists who are well known for their problem- solving abilities, and their desire to help fight for the cause of good.
The Principal of the school knows of the boys’ heroic deeds and confides in them that the Governors of the school want it closed down, as it is falling into disrepair. From this point on, the story takes the most remarkable turns. Part of the Principal’s office falls down, and the timbers are covered with barnacles. It is here we learn that there is a connection with pirates and buried treasure that can save the school. However, to find the treasure, one needs to find the map, and as it has been destroyed, the only way that can happen, of course, is by using a time machine.
With superb humour, delightful characters, such as Sir Brashley Bugle, a military man, and Toothless Dave, the pirate, there is much to chuckle about as the reader follows the story. There are clues to follow of course, but when the Pirates invade the school, and masquerade as teachers, and draw pistols and cutlasses to enforce lessons, the boys realise they must act quickly.
There are so many interesting side issues here, such as giant eyeballs, werewolves and riddles to be solved, that each page is exciting. Together with the detailed illustrations breaking up the text, and the easy reading of the story, this book has a huge appeal for the independent reader. Lots of fun and laughter in this story.
|Publisher||Bloomsbury Childrens Books|
|Distributor||Bloomsbury Childrens Books|