A dramatic, atmospheric, gothic masterpiece, from an award-winning author.
Aggie's life in the village with her aunt is as normal as can be. She has never questioned the rule of the Ministration, or the power of the divine beings - the birds. Then she is sent for by the Master of Murkmere, the great house nearby, who wishes her to be companion to his ward, Leah. Needing the money, Aggie reluctantly leaves her aunt and enters a new life.
But all is not well up at the house. The Master is crippled and unhappy, trapped in a wheelchair, hemmed in with bars, for others' safety, as well as his own. Life is ruled by the steward, Silas, who fascinates and repels Aggie in equal measure. And Leah - the strangest of them all - challenges everything Aggie has ever been taught.
Fraught with fenland mist and magic, this supernatural thriller ... is compassionate and original. - The Times
An absorbing coming-of-age tale ... a gripping story. - Starred review, Publishers Weekly
Compelling ... a salutary reminder to keep an eye on the children's bookshelves. - SFX magazine
A well-sustained fantasy with an intriguing plot and strong sense of place and time. - School Librarian
wonderful ... elegantly written and very atmospheric - TES Teacher
This book was brilliant - really, really good! The plot carried you through - you couldn't put it down. Spooky! Read it! - Teen Titles
Ambergate: 'This is a beautiful, compelling novel.' - Guardian
Praise for The Ice Boy: 'A remarkable first novel ... here is a writer whom you can trust.' - Armadillo
Patricia Elliott has written nine novels for children and young adults. Her first novel with Hodder, The Ice Boy, won the Fidler Award for a First Novel and was shortlisted for the Branford-Boase among other awards. Her second, Murkmere, was long-listed for the Guardian Fiction Award and she has since been short-listed for many others, including the Calderdale and the Wirral Paperback of the Year.
Her most recent YA is a Victorian Gothic, The Devil in the Corner. Her new MG series, the Connie Carew Mysteries, is set in the Edwardian period: The House of Eyes and The Ship of Spectres.
Patricia was (and is!) a voracious reader and always scribbled stories during a childhood spent overseas. She worked in publishing in London and in bookselling in New York before taking an M.A. in Writing for Children. She has been a tutor at Morley College, London, and in between writing now leads workshops for both adults and children, including Chelsea Young Writers. She is an active member of CWISL (Children's Writers and Illustrators in South London). She is married, with two sons.