Ludlow is a bright young man who, on his eleventh birthday, is kidnapped by a fairy. He is taken aboard a ship called the Anathema, which is captained by a screaming banshee named Morag and crewed by smelly, and very forgetful, goblins.
Morag is intent on kidnapping twenty-five children, though her purpose in doing so is a mystery. With no allies and no resources, and trapped in the middle of the ocean, Ludlow must plan his escape.
Ludlow Lost is a fantastical adventure that is a great deal of fun to read; it is written in a crisp style with a wonderfully dry sense of humor. The story is full of mythological creatures, or “creatures human beings don’t believe in but exist just the same,” and provides amusing facts to describe each—fairies are generally selfish and untrustworthy, goblins are affable but possess very poor memories, and mermaids scare every other creature that lives in the ocean.
Important underlying themes include friendship, trust, and, perhaps most significantly, dealing with loss. Ludlow often dreams that he is back home on his birthday, but there is no cake or presents, and everyone around him is sad. He simply cannot remember why. He awakens too soon to make sense of the sadness, but the curiosity of these dreams lingers in the background of this otherwise lighthearted story.
Ludlow Lost is a charming debut, sure to entertain and delight those who appreciate wit and humor in their fantasy.
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