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Beyond the Deepwoods: The Edge Chronicles #01by Paul Stewart and Chris Riddell
Synopses & Reviews
Young Twig lives in the Deepwoods, among the Woodtrolls, but he isnt one of them. In a brave attempt to find out where he belongs, Twig wanders into the mysterious, dangerous world beyond the Deepwoods. He meets a collection of odd companions, such as his wise guardian, the Caterbird; the Slaughterers, a peaceful race who butcher animals for their livelihood; and the vicious, bile-swilling Rotsucker. Always watching out for the horrible Gloamglozer, whose presence haunts the thoughts of all the inhabitants of The Edge, Twig steadfastly pursues his quest until he discovers his roots, not among the trees, but in the skies. . . .
"This charming British series, the Edge Chronicles, makes a transatlantic crossing with its launch title, a handsomely designed paper-over-board volume with pen-and-inks by the authors. In poetic prose, Stewart and Riddell invent the magical realm that culminates at the Edge (a precipice that resembles 'the figurehead of a mighty stone ship'). The flow of water that ceaselessly falls off the Edge originates in the Deepwoods, where 'countless tribes and strange groupings scratch a living in the dappled sunlight and moonglow beneath its lofty canopy.' Twig, who is nearly 13, lives with a family of woodtrolls, but his non-troll appearance (except for the pointy ears) marks him as an outcast; it is not a total surprise when his 'Mother-Mine' reveals that he was dropped 'at the foot of our tree' as an infant. And so begins a journey that leads Twig to his destiny, as the ominous caterbird tells him, which lies 'beyond the Deepwoods.' The narrative will cast a spell over readers from the beginning with its utterly odd, off-kilter sense of logic and a vocabulary that is equal parts Dr. Seuss and Lewis Carroll ('Fromps coughed and spat, quarms squealed, while the great banderbear beat its monstrous hairy chest and yodelled to its mate'). The detailed artwork with numerous comic touches also offer clues to Twig's parentage (he bears a certain resemblance to a dreaded sky pirate who makes an early appearance). Twig winds up at the Edge, and his decision at the chasm leads him to self- discovery — and nicely sets up the next adventure, Stormchaser (-75070-6; also releasing this month), which sees Twig beginning his life as a sky pirate. Ages 10-12. (June)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Stunningly original." The Guardian (UK)
"A richly inventive fantasy...one of the most exciting collaborations between a writer and illustrator for a long time." The Literary Review (UK)
This "stunningly original" (The Guardian, UK) fantasy series for middle-graders introduces young Twig — who lives in the Deepwoods among the Woodtrolls but isn't one of them — and his adventures in the mysterious, dangerous world beyond the Deepwoods. Illustrations.
Abandoned at birth in the Deepwoods, Twig is brought up by a family of woodtrolls. One night, Twig abandons woodtroll tradition — he strays from the path. Thus begins a heart-stopping adventure: strange creatures, bloodthirsty enemies, and a destiny in the skies.
About the Author
Paul Stewart is the author of many books for children including The Midnight Hand and The Wakening. He lives in Brighton, England.
Chris Riddell has illustrated many books for children and has been shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Medal and the Kurt Maschler Award. He is also the acclaimed political cartoonist for the Guardian and the Observer. He lives in Sussex, England.
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