The Faceless Ones (Skullduggery Pleasant)
Derek Landy
HarperCollins (2009)
ISBN 9780061240911
Reviewed by Ben Weldon (age 11) for Reader Views (9/09)

 

“The Faceless Ones” by Derek Landy is the exciting, if somewhat gruesome, story of Skullduggery Pleasant, a living skeleton who works as a detective, and his thirteen-year-old sidekick Valkyrie Cain as they search for an evil villain who is responsible for killing several Teleporters.  Teleporters are people endowed with the power to teleport anywhere at any time.  They hold the key to the end of the world.  And there aren’t many of them left.  But could this mysterious villain have an even deeper, darker secret than cold-blooded murders?

Skullduggery Pleasant is no ordinary detective.  A skeleton brought to life for magical reasons Skullduggery is witty and now almost invincible.  He’s shot at and chopped at by scythes, but, lucky for him, he hasn’t got a drop of blood to lose.  My favorite thing that Skullduggery said about him self is probably, “I am a skeleton brought back to life with an extraordinary fashion sense.”  After all, people would get really scared if they just saw bones walking around.

Valkyrie Cain is an energetic thirteen-year-old girl who is Skullduggery’s sidekick.  She has helped Skullduggery on many different cases since they met.  Now learning magic from Skullduggery and wearing clothing made by a magically endowed tailor, she can hold her own against even the most powerful villains.  It helps that her clothes are bullet-proof and she is good at throwing fireballs.

When a mysterious series of murders happens, Skullduggery and Valkyrie dig in and search for clues.  They uncover a link between the mysterious murderer and the Diablerie, a strange gang of psycho super villains.  But Skullduggery and Valkyrie have just two more problems to solve.  Who is the mysterious ringleader?  And what is his goal?

I would recommend this book to people who like fantasy and mystery novels.  This book would probably be better for people ten and up.  I would strongly not recommend this book to the faint of heart.  There are corpses in most every chapter.  I read this book (the fourth in its series) without having read the preceding books and it was still an engaging and entertaining book. “The Faceless Ones” by Derek Landy was a great book and an intriguing mystery that sweeps you into the book from the first page.

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