20 Oct 2009


The Gates By John Connolly.

Samuel Johnson has a number of problems. Samuel's dad cares more about his car than his family, Samuel's mother is lonely, and only Samuel's dog, Boswell, truly understands him.

Oh, and as if things couldn't get any worse, Samuel's neighbours, led by the villainous Mrs Abernathy, are trying to open the gates of hell. It's up to Samuel to stop them, except nobody will believe him, and time is running out....

Now the face of humanity lies in the hands of a small boy, an even smaller dog, and a very unlucky demon named Nurd.

.... From the back cover.

First Sentence: In the beginning, about 13.7 billion years ago. to be reasonably precise, there was a very, very small dot.

Recommended for those aged 12 years and over, or as the author says "A strange novel for strange YOUNG people" - The Gates is one of those books that I'm sure will appeal to all ages though some readers, like myself, may find the author's tone a little patronizing at times.

With an interesting front cover, slightly embossed with a slight shimmer to it, the book is noticeable straight away and doesn't disappoint on the opening where we are presented with a Gothic style print interior.

Quite topical in content, the action starts when "the computer screen, which was occupied by a visual representation of all the exciting things happening in the (Large Hadron Collider) particle accelerator, beeped" and a portal is opened which allows demons through into our world.

A story all about bravery, the love of a boy for his dog and that dog's love for a boy, it is also about friendship and kindness, and is very funny in places - the image of Mr and Mrs Mayer doing battle with demons, he armed with a pair of fire tongs and a dustbin lid and she with a poker, will stay with me for a long time. My only criticism, apart from the occasional patronizing tone, being the large number of footnotes, some of which took over the best part of the page.

MY RATING: 3 out of a possible 5.


Dutch donut girl said...

Thank you for stopping by my blog and leaving a comment1 I love comments :) I had never heard of John Connelly.

....Petty Witter said...

Welcome to Pen And Paper Dutch donut girl. No I hadn't heard of him either until I saw this book being reviewed on several sites and thought I'd check it out for myself.

Kelly said...

I occasionally pick up books written for younger folks and often find them quite good (i.e. The Book Thief and the Twilight series).

This one sounds pretty good!

Jenners said...

I wonder if this is the same author who wrote "The Book of Lost Things," which was quite a freaky book that was KIND of for younger kids but was KIND of violent and scary and bloody and a bit weird. Like a twisted fairy tale. I 'll have to look and see!

Jenners said...

Yup...same author!

Bybee said...

I love the thought of a dog named Boswell. It's perfect.

chitra said...

Your Page has taken a new look. It looks pretty and simple :)