Saturday, August 8, 2015

The Accidental Highwayman by Ben Tripp

Title: The Accidental Highwayman, Being the Tale of Kit Bristol, His Horse Midnight, a Mysterious Princess, and Sundry Magical Persons Besides
Author: Ben Tripp
Age Group: Teen/Young Adult
Genre: Fantasy
Series: The Accidental Highwayman, book one
Star Rating: 4 Out of 5 Stars

I borrowed this book from my local library and reviewed it.

Do you enjoy the works of Robert Louis Stevenson? Jane Austen? If you said yes to either of those questions, wait for it..

Now, can you imagine them being put together? Me, after reading this book, and fangirling so hardcore:


Ben Tripp's first novel for young adults was like watching a good movie, full of everything: romance, action, frightening villains, murder, faeries.. Shall I go on? This book begins with Kit Bristol, a mere servant boy to the notorious highwayman, Whistling Jack. When his master is confronted by a mysterious band of gentlemen, looking for him, Kit must take on the mantle that his master has set before him, and ends up in an adventure so ultimately trying that he may end up meeting the hangman's noose head on..

I loved almost everything about this book. From the get go, it rang with Austenian charm that instantly captured my imagination. It was a rip-rollicking, charming adventure, that had the little daredevil in me screaming for more. I loved it, and despite a few flaws, I'm hoping that there's eventually a sequel.

The pacing of this novel was breakneck--by the second chapter, I was breathlessly turning pages, so anxious to see what became of Kit and his friends that I was in serious danger of multiple paper cuts. The characters, especially our charming Kit, were delightful, full of witty repartee and their own secrets. There's the aforementioned Princess, who is on the run to escape an arranged marriage, engineered by her demanding royal father, and then there are her companions, Willum and Gruntle, two hilarious characters in their own right. There's also Kit's horse Midnight, a funny, steadfast character himself, and Madga, the old hag..

Okay, I'm getting off track here. If you're a fan of adventure stories, Austen, Stevenson, pirates, princesses, fairies, and other magical creatures, go get this book. From the bookstore, from the library, it doesn't matter where. Only I assure you, my dear readers, that those who choose to accompany Kit on his thrilling journey will not regret it.

The action was good, but at times the language was hard to understand, and thus made it hard to follow, but another bonus about this lovely hidden gem? Illustrations have been peppered all throughout the narrative, also by the author! Score! The bottom line: A throwback to the classical adventure novels of old, Ben Tripp has created a fun, thrilling ride through eighteenth century England, complete with magic, monsters, evil villains, and romance! Next on deck: Adrift by Paul Griffin!

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