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The Maker of Monsters

The Maker of Monsters

Lorraine Gregory
Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780192768834

Meet Brat - his name sums up his existence: he is unappreciated, unloved and overlooked. Treated as if he is no more than a 'Brat', our hero's life is controlled by his master, Lord Macawber, a vengeful maker of monsters. Poor Brat - he has never known a life outside of the castle walls and has only ever known harsh words and unkindness. He does, however, have two loyal and loving friends, Tingle and Sherman, prototype hybrid monsters, created by Macawber and brought to life by black magic. Together they form an endearing and loyal trio.

Lord Macawber is seeking revenge for the kidnap of his daughter and he works with maniacal obsession to create an army of monsters, pieced together from different beasts. Brat is Macawber's orphaned servant; scared of his environment, scared of his master yet always able to see glimmers of hope in all that he sees.

When Lord Macawber's evil plans go disastrously wrong, it is Brat who has to save the kingdom. Brat finds within himself a courage he never knew he had. Desperate to put an end to the devastation that the monster army is going to cause, Brat has to deliver a locket to the Doomed City. Facing all manner of fears, Brat sets off with his beloved Tingle and Sherman. Along the way he meets Molly and they unite to rescue a whole community - a community that Brat has been taught to fear.

As he endeavours to right Macawber's wrongs, Brat learns that he is worth so much more than being Lord Macawber's lowly slave. He also knows that he has a huge dilemma as he knows that in order to save lives, other lives must be lost. His willingness to make the ultimate sacrifice is so poignant and embodies all that Brat really is: honourable, noble and selfless, certainly not a 'Brat'.

This is a thrilling read. The characters are strong and will leave an imprint on your heart long after the last page has been turned. Brat is such an unlikely but such a well-deserved hero. He is proof that anything is possible if you dare to believe in yourself. He shows us that good will always prevail and that love will certainly conquer all .

Vivid description and breath-taking action scenes will have you gasping in shock and surprise whilst the bond between Brat and his friends will leave you basking in a warm, furry glow! I'm hoping there's a sequel as I don't want my friendship with Brat to finish. This is a book crying out for merchandise - I'm first in the queue for a cuddly Tingle and Sherman. Please!

256 pages / Ages 9+ / Reviewed by Jo Clarke, teacher


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