The Feral Child
by Che Golden (Author)
Recently orphaned Maddy has come from London to live with her grandparents in Blarney. Shunned as an outsider at school and nagged by a neighbouring aunt, she feels she will never settle in this small unfriendly town, which ‘doesn’t even have a Pizza Hut.’ When her terrier chases a rabbit into the grounds of Blarney Castle, Maddy follows, despite Granda’s constant warnings that she stay away from it. But Granda has a specific reason for keeping Maddy away from the castle grounds.
This becomes apparent when she has a lucky escape from a sharp-toothed creature who tries to abduct her. But he returns to exchange the little boy next door for a changeling – which nobody seems to notice except Maddy. And who will believe her? She finally convinces her cousins, Roisín and ‘ASBO’ Danny to help search for the toddler. At the ancient faerie mound, they are drawn into a vortex of evil and extreme danger in a parallel world. A place that is cold – always cold.
Having three children as the main characters makes room for vibrant dialogue.The skilful blend of well-known figures and creatures from ancient Irish folklore and Celtic mythology with modern upfront youngsters makes the story bounce along with a mixture of laugh-aloud fun and nail-biting fear. The atmospheric descriptions of the cousins’ eerie journey through dark forests and lakes are almost tangible.