Mortlock by Jon Mayhew
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Mortlock – Jon Mayhew

Josie is a knife thrower. Alfie is an undertakers assistant, They are both orphans and they have never met, but their lives are about to collide. They are about to be given a secret to their shared past, and someone is after what they know about it. While they flee for their lives, they must unravel the truth. 

I wanted to read spooky books, and only spooky books during October. This was to get me in the mood for Halloween. And in the mood I got! 

Mortlock was spooky, and at times downright terrifying. The bad guys were evil and disgusting and the whole setting was often creepy. Set in what was suggested to be Victorian times, the characters were from lowly parts of London. not nice places to wander through at any time, let alone when they were running for their lives. 

Each chapter of Mortlock starts with a snippet of a traditional fable, fairy tale or folk song. It really set the mood as they can be so creepy. Just think ring-a-ring o’ roses and you’ve got the idea. You could understand the mood of what was coming from the snippets as they got more and more creepy and morbid as the book went on and I loved the atmosphere it set. 

Mortlock is a tale of running for your life and not knowing who to trust. There’s magic, death and fantasy. For a middle grade book I was terrified at times and wasn’t sure the main characters were ever safe. But I loved every minute! The only reason it isn’t a 5 star book in my mind is that the ending felt a little rushed. It was a 300 odd page book and the climax happened in the last 20 pages or so. I honestly at one point didn’t think there would be a conclusion to the book because I was so close to the end, but there was. 

I think that wont phase the audience it is intended for though, so if you are buying for a 10 or 11 year old who likes being spread, this is the book for them! 

Mortlock was published in January 2011 by Bloomsbury. My copy was gifted to me in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own. For more information visit Goodreads or buy the book here. 

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