Audio Friday

The Creeping Shadow (Lockwood & Co #4)

By Jonathan Stroud

Read By Emily Bevin

Summary from Goodreads:

After leaving Lockwood & Co. at the end of The Hollow Boy, Lucy is a freelance The Creeping Shadowsoperative, hiring herself out to agencies that value her ever-improving skills. One day she is pleasantly surprised by a visit from Lockwood, who tells her he needs a good Listener for a tough assignment. Penelope Fittes, the leader of the giant Fittes Agency wants them–and only them–to locate and remove the Source for the legendary Brixton Cannibal. They succeed in their very dangerous task, but tensions remain high between Lucy and the other agents. Even the skull in the jar talks to her like a jilted lover. What will it take to reunite the team? Black marketeers, an informant ghost, a Spirit Cape that transports the wearer, and mysteries involving Steve Rotwell and Penelope Fittes just may do the trick. But, in a shocking cliffhanger ending, the team learns that someone has been manipulating them all along.

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This is a middle grade series that definitely needs more hype!  Especially now that I hear it is being made into a television series!  It is a British company doing it, but I hope it is also released here in the states.  It has a perfect combination of scary, action and humor.  What could be better than a group of kids teaming up to send ghosts back to where they belong?  It is seriously good scary fun.

All of the books are being told from the point of view of Lucy, one of the agents of Lockwood & Co., a ghost hunting Agency.  I love Lucy, she is just a fun character to spend time with.  She has a special talent among ghost hunters in that she can usually hear them talk.  I especially like her interactions with the skull that she keeps in her backpack, their repartee is so much fun it almost always makes me smile.  I also like her relationships with Anthony Lockwood and George.  They always have each others backs when they are in sticky situations, and they do get into some scary predicaments.  There is a little bit of, hmm not romance exactly, but some attraction between Lockwood and Lucy that is starting to move a little bit further along, but is still awkward and amusing.   They are just short of admitting their feelings for each other in this book. 

I thoroughly enjoy the world that has been created here.  It is an alternative England where there is a ghost problem.  But the thing is, only kids can see the ghosts and so they are the only ones that can get rid of them.  All of the usual ghost hunting techniques are here, salt and iron and burning the source of the haunting. But it is a business.  Most ghost hunting companies are run by adults and they supervise the kids who do the actual hunting.  But not Lockwood & Co., Lockwood runs it with Lucy and George, and they are quite good at what they do. Some of the ghosts they encounter are very creepy, but it is a blast watching them hunt them down and take care of them.  The many ghosts they encounter in this book are especially ghastly and ghoulish. 

Emily Bevin does and excellent job as the reader.  She has a great voice and sounds enough like a young teen to make Lucy believable.  She also does the many other character’s voices quite well (except for maybe George, I have different voice in my head for him).  

If you enjoy ghost hunting stories and are looking for one with an intrepid group of teens, take a peak at this one.  You won’t be disappointed.


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