Is he or isn’t he? That is the question. The answer? Read the book. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, it’s the trilogy of brilliance, The Foundling’s Tale (in the USA and Canada) everywhere else as Monster Blood Tattoo by the incredible D.M Cornish.

These 3 novels are addictive. Not being an avid ‘fantasy’ novel reader person, I was a little hesitant at first. But once I leapt into the world of the Half Continent, I was hooked. I almost had a tantrum when I finished the second book, Lamplighter and book 3, Factotum, had not yet been released. I simply HAD to know what happened in the END!

So what the heck fire is it all about? A boy with a girl’s name, Rossamünd. He’s on an adventure through monster territory, on his way to find out where he fits and who he is. In book 1, Foundling, he meets my favourite character, Europe who is a female kick-ass monster hunter. Rossamünd is on his way to become a lamplighter, a thankless but crucial job. Lamplighters are responsible for lighting the way on some of the most dangerous roads between towns. Monsters lurk here, so it is not a job for the faint hearted.

As Rossamünd learns the lamplighting biz and begins his new career, dark forces rise from unsuspecting places, making him question everything he has ever believed about himself and his world. This is where we find ourselves at the end of book 2. Factotum revolves around Rossamünd and Europe (yippee). It is a journey to discover the true nature of evil. This truth impacts Rossamünd personally and brings danger closer than ever.

It is difficult to give a detailed review of plot because it is such a pleasure to discover for yourself. No spoilers here! But let me tell you how worthwhile it is to get your teeth stuck into this trilogy. It is incredibly rewarding. The characters are noble and true, harking back to a day where chivalry reigned and good triumphed over evil… or did it? The action sequences are teeth grindingly tense and unpredictable. Until the last page, you cannot see what is around the corner. That is what makes it so addictive.

This is not an easy read but like all good things, you have to work for it. So when you finish the trilogy, not only have you been treated to an exciting adventure but it is a story you have earned. The illustrations are terrifying and beautiful.

These books make me buzz with excitement. It seems that I have been converted to fantasy novels. And I like it!

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