While reading this book, I had a simple mantra going through my head; I know what's going to happen next. I know what's going to happen next.
A lot of the time, I just knew what was going to happen next, which is what usually occurs when you constantly have your nose in children's literature at 25 years of age, but 'The Luck Uglies' actually made me admit something to myself out loud. I was wrong.
Here's the thing about villains, apart from being really, really misunderstood; they're actually pretty evil. Moral ambiguity and all that. Society tells us to steer clear of the tyranny of evil. For Rye's world, there's a name that strikes fear into the very heart of the villager. Luck Ugly.
The story starts the way real life should; running away from an angry poet. Rye and her friends have accidentally obtained a banned book, and now are trying to escape the clutches of the slighted victim.
The book? It holds the secrets of the Universe. Well, the secrets and not-so illustrious past of the Village Drowning.
As the story progresses we learn more of the myths, legends, and rumours of this little village; on the night of the Black Moon, Rye's life changes forever.
I loved this story, I devoured it in huge chunks at a time. Really, I just couldn't get enough of it. It was beautifully paced, fast when you needed it to be and slowed down just when I'd internally decided my imagination needed to walk instead of run.
Rye and her friends had a 'pull up your socks' attitude, and Rye herself was alarmingly decisive for a young girl. It's something I really enjoyed, it's a nice sight to see the makings of strong characters without all the brooding doubt. They're all unique, and their little nuances make me eager to watch them grow.
The plot itself was great, at times it was a little predictable but knowing what happens next literally takes nothing away from how much I enjoyed it. It's just perfect for the younger age group, and anyone who enjoys a lovely fantasy novel now that the days are starting to grow cold.
My only gripe is having to play the waiting game. So I'm left with all the impatience of a 5 year old, and a bit of a crush on Harmless actually. Want to know who HE is? Gonna have to read it to find out.
Publisher: HarperCollins Children's