In the fourth tale in this beloved series, villainous Sebastian Eels returns to Eerie-on-Sea, thrusting Herbie and Violet into a new adventure involving a missing girl, a spooky wax museum, and a dangerous clockwork robot.
Herbie Lemon, Lost-and-Founder at the Grand Nautilus Hotel, and his fearless friend Violet Parma have unearthed many secrets in their village of Eerie-on-Sea: secrets lurking beneath the waves, lapping onto the beaches, and lying behind locked doors. When their brilliant and ruthless nemesis, Sebastian Eels, returns with a plan to open the long-shuttered waxworks museum, Herbie and Violet suspect nefarious motives. Their investigation leads them into the dark Netherways below the town—and into the tragic past of the famous toymaker and inventor Ludovic Festergrimm and his doomed daughter, Pandora. Sebastian Eels is convinced that within the story of Festergrimm is the key to Eerie’s deepest secret—a secret in which Herbie himself plays a crucial part—and he’ll stop at nothing to uncover it, including bringing a terrifying clockwork legend back to life. With echoes of fairy tales and monster movies, plus a dismembered finger or two, this is a deliciously creepy addition to a fantastical mystery series that is perfectly calibrated to thrill middle-grade readers.
About the Author
Thomas Taylor is an award-winning author-illustrator for children. His work includes picture books, graphic novels, and the previous novels in this series: Malamander, Gargantis,and Shadowghast. He lives with his family on the south coast of England, where he can often be found combing the beach for ancient or lost things.
Tom Booth has illustrated several acclaimed picture books, including Don’t Blink! and This Is Christmas, which he also wrote. He made his earliest illustrations—sometimes on his parents’ antique kitchen table—growing up in Pennsylvania. Now living in Brooklyn, he is currently at work on several children’s books on a table all his own.
This November is “NOPE-vember,” Herbie Lemon tells Violet Parma, meaning no risky adventures, but spoiler alert: Perilous mysteries are Eerie-on-Sea’s stock in trade. . . . While series fans know what to expect, the plot’s familiar contours deliver a few surprises along the way. . . the quirky art serves as witty counterpoint to Herbie’s stoic narration while Eerie’s Saint Dismal nicely embodies the English-seaside-in-the-off-season setting. . . . A cozy and atmospheric read. —Kirkus Reviews