#51 Gargantis by Thomas Taylor

When an ancient bottle is found washed up on the beach after a ferocious electrical storm, all the residents of Eerie-on-Sea seem to want it … but should they in fact fear it? Legend has it that the bottle contains an extraordinary secret that spells doom for the whole of Eerie-on-Sea. Could it be true that the vast sea creature Gargantis has awoken from her slumbers, and is causing the large cracks that are appearing all across the town? Finding themselves entrusted with the bottle, Herbie and Violet discover they will need to ride the terrible storm and pacify the creature if they want to save Eerie-on-Sea from sliding into the ocean and being lost for ever.

Paperback | 352 pages

Publisher: Walker Books; 01 edition (7 May 2020)

Age Range: 9-12 years old.

 I really enjoyed Malamander and again, hadn’t realised the second book in the series was even out yet! I knew I’d be in for another thrilling adventure and couldn’t wait to see what Herbie Lemon and Violet Parma got up to next. (1/3 in and I wasn’t disappointed).

Easy to read and very captivating. There is adventure around every corner and the characters are interesting and curious.

I find the character pairing of Herbie and Violet to be delicious to read. Violet is the more outspoken and confident partner while Herbie is the more serious, curious and weary character.

The Malamander left off with a lot of questions I needed answered and left Herbie and Violet triumphant in the face of danger but unknowing where their journey would now lead. In this book I saw more of Herbie’s vulnerable side and felt l learnt more about his character in his actions and emotions. There are still a lot of questions surrounding Herbie that I need answering but I was happy with his character projection in this book.

Violet displayed more bravery and a little stupidity during this book. Some of her actions seemed foolish but I can’t fault a character for trying something new and for an author trying to push a character towards new horizons.

This was easy to visualise as I was already familiar with the characters and setting. I just built off what I already had.

I particularly enjoyed the Star Wars reference on page 117 “You’ve never heard of the Jornty Spark? This is the ship that made the Kessel Island run in less that twelve minutes.” That gave me quite a chuckle.

I did find myself wanting to skim read some sections that just seemed like unnecessary words, but I still got the gist of the story. Deep Hood’s revel tore me in two parts because on the one hand, I’d greatly enjoyed this villainous character but on the other hand I was disappointed by who he turned out to be and felt there could have been a better alternative.

I enjoyed this book, but I didn’t think it was as good as Malamander. I was left with more questions than answers and while I enjoy a good mystery, I hope that I get some good answers in the next installment. There is only so much mystery you can take before you get bored of things. There is a lot of magic in this series and a lot of curiosities that I enjoy reading about. I absolutely adore Herbie as a character, I think he’s a fun collection of a lot of good attributes and the way the story is told through is pov is both uplifting and adventurous.

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