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Lord Loss (The Demonata, Book 1)
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It's in the blood

About the Author

Born in London in 1972, Darren O'Shaughnessy [writing as Darren Shan] moved to Limerick with his parents and younger brother. Returned to London to study Sociology and English then worked for a TV cable company. His first adult novel Ayuamarca has been published by Orion and his writing has been likened to Clive Barker and Iain Banks. He is now a full-time writer of TV scripts and novels. Cirque du Freak is his first title for children.

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The author of the popular Cirque du Freak books launches another no less gruesome series with this first installment in the Demonata books. Readers meet teen narrator Grubitsch Grady ("Grubbs") in a bad spot-he's in the principal's office, caught smoking cigarettes-but things are about to get far worse. Grubbs seeks revenge against the informant, his sister, Gretelda, by smearing her bath towels with rat guts. He feels guilty about this when, just a few pages later, Gretelda, Mom and Dad are killed in appalling fashion by Lord Loss, a "demon master," and his grotesque familiars-Vein and Artery. Grubbs is sole witness to his family's execution and his narrow escape, by means he doesn't quite understand himself, nearly drives him mad. He goes to live with insensitive Uncle Dervish, who regales his newly orphaned nephew with stories about the "long and bloody history" of the house that Grubbs will now call home. Written mainly in sentence fragments with an excess of exclamation points, the narrative is a mish-mash of occult motifs. Halfway through the story, werewolves make an appearance. It's tough to take any of this seriously: the cartoonish villain stages high-stakes showdowns that mix slasher flick-style battles with chess matches. The author introduces threads about rare books and a missing treasure, then drops them, presumably to pick them up in the following volume, due out next year. Ages 15-up. (Oct.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

Praise for Lord Loss "Utterly unputdownable" The Times "The master of children's horror at his blood-curdling best." Publishing News Praise for Darren Shan Lord of the Shadows 'Stephen King for kids ! Darren Shan has brought his own brand of vampire mythology into the heads and hearts of thousands of children with his vivid and compelling series The Saga of Darren Shan, about one boy's journey from ordinary lad to vampire prince. Once they're hooked, kids tend to rip into the flesh of these books, quickly draining them of their life blood. The covers, with images of ghouls, creeping hands and dripping fangs are terrifying alone. ' Metro Life, Evening Standard Cirque Du Freak "!fast-paced and compelling book which leaves the reader hungry for more." JK Rowling "I read Cirque Du Freak last week. I loved it. I love the way you manage to juggle the funny with the unpleasant, the affection with the hurt. It's great story-telling." Roddy Doyle

Gr 7 Up-When sneaky teenaged Grubbs Grady finds himself mysteriously dumped on his aunt's doorstep, he can't help but steal back home to figure out what's going on. Unfortunately, when he arrives, his parents and sister have been horrifically killed in true Shan form: their bodies ripped to shreds by an evil demon named Lord Loss and his vile henchmen. Grubbs somehow manages to escape the fiends and goes to live with his Uncle Dervish, a peculiar dandy who lives in a creepy country mansion whose secrets may hold the key to the murders. Chock-full of family curses, werewolf lore, and stomach-turning gore, Lord Loss is exactly the kind of horror that "Cirque Du Freak" (Little, Brown) fans will love. Characterizations may take a backseat to fast pacing, but this first installment in a new series is still guaranteed to gross out anyone aged 12 to 20.-Hillias J. Martin, New York Public Library Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

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