Having barely escaped the revolution they had a huge (if accidental) part in causing, sharp-eyed orphan Mosca Mye; her guard goose, Saracen; and their sometimes-loyal companion, the con man Eponymous Clent, must start anew.
All too quickly, they find themselves embroiled in fresh schemes and twisting politics as they are trapped in Toll, an odd town that changes its entire personality as day turns to night. Mosca and her friends attempt to fend off devious new foes, subvert old enemies, prevent the kidnapping of the mayor's daughter, steal the town's Luck, and somehow manage to escape with their livesand hopefully a little money in their pockets.
In the eagerly awaited sequel to Fly by Night, acclaimed storyteller Frances Hardinge returns to a vivid world rich with humor, danger, and discovery.
Names were important. You carried your name like a brand. You never lied about it, for fear of angering the god under which you were born.
In theory, there were no unlucky Beloved. All of them had their places in the world, and even those who munched head lice or inspired the artistry of spiders' webs were useful and to be praised. However, the fact was that some Beloved were seen as luckier, brighter, more trustworthy, more generous, more worthy, and so were those born under them.
As a child of Palpitattle, Mosca was used to seeing noses wrinkle and gazes chill when she admitted to her name. Palpitattle's job was to keep the flies in order and out of mischief, but this he could do because he was a fly, the emperor of flies. The thinly veiled loathing she was sensing now, however, was something new.
The more devoutly someone worshipped the Beloved, the more seriously they took the lore of names, and the more severe the reaction. Looking around at the Beloved faces ...
In a story of non-stop action and incident, Frances Hardinge magically manages to fill in the back-story of Fly By Night, to which this is a sequel, and explain the religion of Beloveds, the politics of Toll, and the dastardly goals of the evil Locksmiths. Her description of how Toll-by-Day becomes Toll-by-Night rivals the writing of Neil Gaiman and China Mieville.
(Reviewed by Judy Krueger).
Full Review (849 words).
As soon as I got to know Mosca, the main character in Fly Trap, I felt sure that author Frances Hardinge was a unique and unusual person whom I would like to know better.
After a bit of research, I learned that she grew up in Kent, in the South of England, "in a huge, isolated old house in a small, strange village," and began writing stories about magic when she was very young.
Hardinge studied at Oxford University and helped form a writers' group there. She is the author of four books: Fly By Night (2005), Well Witched (2007), The Lost Conspiracy (2009), and FlyTrap (2011), and she has published numerous short stories, including "Behind the Mirror" and "Halfway House." She does not go out without a hat, ...
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