The Executioner’s Daughter by Jane Hardstaff
Publisher: Egmont UK Limited
Genre: Middle Grade Novel, Historical Fantasy
Post Book Thoughts: Gimme gimme more, gimme more, gimme gimme more!
The crowds at the Tower of London love nothing better than watching an execution. Preferably while eating pie.
Not Moss. She’ll never get used to beheading’s, no matter what Pa says. She watches the river as it flows past and longs to escape.
Salter lives on the river. Using his wits and his boat, he believes that life is mostly about staying alive, and if that means stealing – well, that’s life!
But danger is lurking on the riverbank, and its murky depths hide a secret that could change everything…
I did read some of the reviews for this book and a lot of them were quite negative so I might be somewhat on the defensive scale of things here.
You should know I am an absolute sucker for a good children’s novel (I absolutely refuse to grow up that way) and if you decide to pick this book up it is important to realise that this was probably written for 9 – 12 year old’s.
It does slightly lack in having that mad sense of adventure, I do feel the author could’ve done more to make it a little more thrilling because the story definitely had potential for it. However it was still rather fun to get lost in, even the descriptions of the places and the people (while some people may find draggy) did a lot to illustrate the scene and the world we were in. Of course me being a big fan of world building ate it up like a hot tomato soup with croutons on a cold rainy day. Let us also not forget that this was a novel based in historical times so the descriptions help.
What impressed me the most though (Warning: very small spoilers ahead) was the grey areas in most of the characters. There was no definite bad guy or good guy. I mean there were the royalty who we’d compare to modern day politicians I suppose (no further explanation needed there). When closer insights were given to the characters no one seemed to be this irredeemable bad guy, not even the river witch who stole children neither was anyone a shining perfect hero. There’s cause and action along with consequence and I think it’s a good story for children to hear.
The main character our lil girl Moss is one most people complain about, I think she is what a 11 year old girl cooped up in one tower forever should be. Also she picks up heads in a basket for her father for heavens sake, whatchu expecting?!
Anyway if you want something fun and quick to read (unlike this particular blog post) do pick up the book! I finished it in two days and have no regrets reading it, I would also like a sequel *looks at Jane Hardstaff even though she’ll never really see me*