The best thing about the book is that Emily reacts to everything like a gobby modern girl — sarcastic, incredulous, defiant — and her meetings with allies and villains can be laugh-out-loud funny. It adds to the tradition of quests in magical worlds, with its larger-than-life characters of an Irish family, a library as a seat of power, satire of many kinds, and a youthful policeman with pointed ears behaving like an idiot while trying to prove himself. It is great fun.
...The Midnight Hour (Chicken House), from storytelling partners Benjamin Read and Laura Trinder, features bold Emily, who’s lost both parents somewhere in the Midnight Hour, a dark Victorian London suspended for ever in time and inhabited by the mysterious Night Folk. As she encounters an embodied Library, a policeman with superpowers and an appalling predator, Emily grapples with what it may cost to find and save her family. Anarchic humour, rich imagination and poetic writing, interspersed with elegant line drawings, add up to pure delight – with a stowaway hedgehog as a bonus.