Friday, 9 November 2012

The Song of the Quarkbeast Review

The Song of the Quarkbeast (Last Dragonslayer #2)
- Jasper Fforde

Publisher: Hodder

As the background Wizidrical Power slowly builds after the Big Magic, King Snodd IV of Hereford realises the man who controls Magic controls almost anything. But one person stands between him and his plans for power and riches: Jennifer Strange, sixteen-year-old acting manager of Kazam. It may involve a trip on a magic carpet at the speed of sound to the Troll Wall, it may involve a second Quarkbeast sniffing around town. It might also involve the mysterious Transient Moose, and a powerless sorceress named Once Magnificent Boo. But one thing is certain: Jennifer Strange and her faithful assistant Tiger Prawns will not relinquish the noble powers of magic to big business and commerce without a fight.

This is the second visit to the weird and wonderful world of Jennifer Strange, foundling and acting manager of Kazam, a magic agency which delivers pizza via flying carpet and finds lost objects through spells. Once again Jennifer has a lot on her plate – King Snodd of Hereford wants a competition between Kazam and their magical rivals iMagic to see who will Court Magician. The twin of Jennifer’s Quarkbeast is being hunted around town and the future of magic could be at stake. So like any other day really.

I love that so much of the joy of this series is from acting sensibly in a ridiculous world. Jennifer and her fellow foundling ‘Tiger’ Prawns are the only sensible people who behave in a way we would find normal – and this makes them geniuses – or close to it. There is a lot of fun from the silly situations such as the mysterious X’s outing to the zoo to the transient Moose’s appearances around the hotel. The plot is simpler than The Last Dragonslayer, but fast paced and never less than interesting.

Jasper Fforde has one of the most fascinating comic writers – he seems to be able to take some as simple as building a bridge and base so much plot and intriguing plot elements on it to make it the most interesting story. Some elements are laugh out loud funny, while others are wry smiles, but either way you are left entertained and wanting more amusing adventures!

Recommended for fans for of Robert Rankin and Amanda Ashby. 8 out of 10


  1. Oh, oh, oh! How I wish I could get my hands on this book. The first book just came out in the US in September and I can't wait to read the rest of them. I really admire Fforde's books for adults, but I thought The Last Dragonslayer was even tighter and better plotted.

  2. I have to get back into his books. I loved the Eyre series (I need to finish those) although I did get stuck on the nursery rhyme one. Just didn't finish it. However, this sounds like what I do enjoy about his writing. Gots to get the series!

  3. I confess I was really disappointed by the first one so I don't know what to do with this one. the writing style is really special...