Corby Flood (Far-Flung Adventures) by Paul Stewart, illustrated by Chris Riddell 214pp RL4

Corby Flood is the second in the Far-Flung Adventrues series by Paul Stewart and Chris Riddell, and, although the books do not have to be read in order there are reoccurring people and places in all three adventures. Corby's story takes place aboard the S.S. Euphonia, upon which the Flood family is traveling from Dandoon to their hometown of Harbor Heights, which Corby has never seen. Having experienced a great disaster while building the Tamberlaine-Marx Crossing for the Begum of Dandoon, Corby's father, a renowned bridge builder and brilliant engineer, has retired to his berth in defeat and will not leave his cabin. While at sea with her Hoffendink's Guide that describes interesting places along the coast of Dalcretia that the cruise line no longer visits, Corby stumbles across more than a few mysteries, the most urgent of which concerns a creature inside of a wooden crate that sings the saddest song. The villains in this tale are a group of green bowler wearing members of the Brotherhood of Clowns, all of who have have surnames that are also the names of familiar fonts...

As with the other books in this series, Fergus Crane and Hugo Pepper, this adventure is packed with details - more than I can fit into this review. Paul Stewart provides Chris Riddell with a wonderful world to illustrate, and the lucky reader gets to see those fabulous pictures on almost every page. This book would be a great read out loud, but it is almost better to let your children read it alone and savor every word and picture as they go.

Fergus Crane and Hugo Pepper are the other books in the series.

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