A review by sauvageloup
The Library of the Dead by T.L. Huchu

adventurous funny mysterious tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes


a fun supernatural, dystopian mystery read, enjoyed it.

- the writing style was different and fun. I got a real sense of who Ropa was and liked her a lot. her character comes through through the writing, with a quirky mix of slang and complicated language and concepts. shes both smart and street smart.
- I also really loved priya and gran as side characters, they were great. priya was a lot of fun to read, and ropa's love for her gran was obvious.
- there was also some lovely descriptions in Huchu's writing, creating a great atmosphere.
- the horror was also genuinely creepy
with the Brounie, the eyeless milkman, the unaging siobhan

- while the mystery was great, the tensions ropa had about still bringing money in and helping her family felt very real. she really feels she has to carry everything and doesnt tell anyone older than her, apart from Callender, who fails her.
- I likes the dystopian Edinburgh a lot, made a nice change from London, and the implied breakdown of society which was hinted at but never entirely explained, was interesting.
- priya's magical wheelchair was fab, really interesting application of magic.
- and the bits of African culture, the mbira helping ground the spirits and gran's magic, were great, enjoyed learning about them.

- I never got a real sense of Jomo, he seemed quite hapless and not particularly helpful, didnt quite get Ropa's loyalty to him.
- occasionally the slang dialogue did feel a bit forced but not often.
- the two main bits of the plot seemed very disparat .
the creepy brounie house and the children having elixir made from them were only barely linked. 
- I did get a bit frustrated with the refusal to give an in depth explanation of a lot of things, like
the collapse of Edinburgh, why the milkman had no eyes, why only the faces of the kids got old, what happened with Ropa's mum, why Ropa's magic didnt work (tho I guess it said at the end that she just needed to be angry enough), how Priya's wheelchair magic worked (why could she go on ceilings but not up a steep hill?).
I mean, it's a mystery story and a series so some of these are understandable but there did seem to be a bit too much vagueness at times.

but overall, really enjoyed this read :)

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