Review: Jackaby

Publication: Algonquin Young Readers
Genre: Fantasy
Format: Hardcover, 299 pages
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When Miss Abigail Rook arrives in New Fiddleham, New England, she is desperate for a job. Desperate enough to answer are strange posting. Working as investigative assistant to R. F. Jackaby, Abigail finds herself at the scene of a gruesome murder- one that Jackaby is certain was committed by a supernatural creature. Abigail is thrown into a wider world, one stranger and more dangerous than her own, as she and Jackaby endeavour to catch a killer that almost nobody else believes exists.

I love the cover of this novel! They colouring is just lovely, and it's so eerie looking. That said, I kind of feel like it doesn't exactly suit the book... Moving on.

This book was nothing too complicated, but it was still a fun read. Set in the fictional city of New Fiddleham, the novel follows Abigail as she attempts to find her way in an unfamiliar place- one that becomes even more unfamiliar once she manages to find a job. Supernatural creatures stalk the city, and she now works for Jackaby, one of the few people in the world that can see them for what they are. Though Abigail is blind to the world he sees, she has a gift for noticing the ordinary things others miss. Abigail was an enjoyable and interesting point of view to read from, if not a complex one. Her character and narration were overall straightforward. I would have liked to see more evidence of Abigail's aforementioned talent, and perhaps some cultivation of her understanding of the supernatural world around her.

The story itself was fast-paced and light- there were elements that felt like the perhaps ought to have been serious, but I just wasn't that absorbed. I enjoyed the supernatural element, though I would have liked to see more of the investigation, and perhaps more of the clues. So far, the world in this book hasn't been all that well defined, though there is a sequel. As I mentioned, it didn't really have the atmosphere that the cover portrays. In a lot of ways, this book felt like a series of snapshots of the investigation, rather than one flowing, cohesive story.

Overall, this book was a quick, easy read that more or less met my expectations, but didn't exceed them. The storytelling, characters, and plot felt fairly simple, but it was still enjoyable.
author image

Kelly

I'm a reader and reviewer from Ontario, Canada, which mean that sometimes library trips take place place through a foot or so of snow. I'm going into my third year of university, studying Environmental Sciences, which I juggle with my almost constant reading. I've been blogging at at my own blog since 2012, and I'll be helping Yani out here on Paper Boulevard as a co-blogger.
Kelly

I'm a reader and reviewer from Ontario, Canada, which mean that sometimes library trips take place place through a foot or so of snow. I'm going into my third year of university, studying Environmental Sciences, which I juggle with my almost constant reading. I've been blogging at my own blog and I'll be helping Yani out here on Paper Boulevard as a co-blogger.

7 comments

  1. It's a shame the cover didn't suit the book well! It really is a lovely cover. I don't know if this book is for me because I would prefer it to be darker and more complicated. I still may pick it up one day, though!

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    1. The cover looks a lot more Gothic than the book turned out to be, and not quite what I was hoping. If you like a darker, more complex read, this might not be the book for you.

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  2. The cover definitely does suggest something darker than what you're explaining you got from this one. I've been meaning to give this one a try since it's always popping up in the blogosphere and the cover is so eye--catching (i am a lover of beautiful covers). While the cover may have deceived this one a bit i'm happy that you still liked this one overall. Great review!

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    1. Despite how the cover contrasted with the contents, it did end up being a fun read. If you're looking for a fairly light paranormal novel with a hint of mystery, this might be one to check out!

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  3. I love your blogs header ! The layout is great the so is the content! I also love the review ! I must add Jackaby to my tbr.

    Meleika

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    1. Thanks! All the credit goes to Yani for the header and layout, they really are quite lovely. If you do wind up reading it, I'd love to hear what you think.

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    2. Thank you! You're so kind. Thanks to Kelly too for bringing the blog with good review posts! <3

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