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The Bellinghman
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#57 Paul Stewart & Chris Riddell: Freeglader

Paul Stewart & Chris Riddell: Freeglader

Paperback: 416 pages
Publisher: Corgi Childrens (1 Sep 2005)
ISBN-10: 0552548502
Category(ies): Fantasy/YA

The third of the Rook Trilogy. After the climax of the previous volume, the Shryke have been nearly wiped out, the Goblins were scattered and destroyed, the Mire Road is no more ... well, there's been a lot of change. But there is also a large number of refugees from Undertown trying to sneak past the Mire and around the deadly Twilight Woods.

This one comprises three sections. The first part is a refugee trek through danger, which is completed by a frantic battle in which the all the forces of good battle to save them. The second is somewhat lower key, being the recovery of Rook from the mind-blanking sepia storm that overtook him during the trek, and the judgement on Xanth, and then the third part is the defence of the Free Glades themselves against the massive war machines of the Foundry Glades.

Through all of this, Stewart's invention and Riddel's illustrations (usually one finely drawn picture every two or three pages) produce a vibrant world that is very different from ours, a world that is totally unexplained (the known world is triangular, with bottomless abysses along two sides?), but one that is full of life, and death.

A fine conclusion to the trilogy.
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