The Resource Fly by night, Frances Hardinge

Fly by night, Frances Hardinge

Label
Fly by night
Title
Fly by night
Statement of responsibility
Frances Hardinge
Creator
Subject
Genre
Language
eng
Summary
Mosca Mye and her homicidal goose, Saracen, travel to the city of Mandelion on the heels of smooth-talking con-man, Eponymous Clent
Member of
Tone
Writing style
Award
School Library Journal Best Books, 2006.
Review
  • Gr. 6-9. Taught to read by her scholar father, orphaned book lover Mosca Mye is an anomaly in a culture where literature is highly suspect and tightly controlled. When silver-tongued poet-spy Eponymous Clent passes through her village, the word-starved 12-year-old stubbornly installs herself as his traveling companion, serving as his uneasy accomplice in a mission that exposes the cutthroat intrigues roiling the surface of her troubled fantasy realm. Plot elements featuring intellectual and religious oppression carry a cumbersome philosophical load, tempered by a richly constructed backdrop incorporating Moscas belligerent pet goose, eccentric floating coffeehouses, and a folk religion honoring household deities such as He Who Keeps Flies Out of Jams and Butterchurns. The relish for words, words, wonderful words sometimes seems more Hardinges idiosyncracy than her protagonists, especially as dense political upheavals begin to supersede Moscas personal goals. Even so, the characters ferocity and authentic inner turmoil, both reminiscent of Philip Pullmans Lyra Belacqua, may buoy patient readers through this overlong but charismatic first novel. -- Jennifer Mattson (Reviewed 08-01-2006) (Booklist, vol 102, number 22, p65)
  • /* Starred Review */ Gr 5-9 –Mosca, 12, and Eponymous Clent, a traveling wordsmith of dubious repute, become immersed in the intrigues of the city of Mandelion, where rival guilds vie for power with a “pixilated” Duke and his scheming sister. Initially awed by her confusing new surroundings, Mosca gradually pieces together important truths about the realm and her place within it. Through rich, colorful language and a sure sense of plot and pacing, Hardinge has created a distinctly imaginative world full of engaging characters, robust humor, and true suspense. Readers get to know the realm and its people through the interactions between Mosca and a well-drawn cast of supporting characters. While she tries to judge right from wrong within the complex plots that ensnare her, she finds that few of the people she meets are as simple as they first seem. Vying religious beliefs also play a part in the fate of the realm, and the details develop neatly as the adventures progress. Plot twists, lively dialogue, and the antics of Mosca’s fierce pet goose add plenty of humor. The conclusion addresses the value of words in a satisfying manner. This sophisticated tale is not for everyone. Some readers may struggle to keep track of the complex politics, history, and religion in Mosca’s world, but those who appreciate the inventive plots of Cornelia Funke and Jonathan Stroud or Lloyd Alexander’s colorful prose should thoroughly enjoy this highly original adventure.–Steven Engelfried, Beaverton City Library, OR --Steven Engelfried (Reviewed July 1, 2006) (School Library Journal, vol 52, issue 7, p104)
  • /* Starred Review */ In a broken-down medieval kingdom where reading is forbidden, 12-year-old Mosca Mye is drawn to a traveling con artist who "brought phrases as vivid and strange as spices, and he smiled as he spoke, as if tasting them." Hardinge's stylish way with prose gives her sprawling debut fantasy a literate yet often silly tone that calls to mind Monty Python. Plucky Mosca rescues the con man—called Eponymous Clent—from the town stocks, accidentally burning down her uncle's mill in the process. Their journey unfolds against a wickedly complex political backdrop, a fragmented civilization largely run by guilds of locksmiths, boatmen and printers (the only ones allowed to decide which books will survive). Mosca and Clent find themselves embroiled in intrigue between the guilds, an entry point to a sly bit of allegory involving a secret printing press and "dangerous" pamphleteers ("Truth is dangerous. It topples palaces and kills kings.... And yet there is one thing that is more dangerous than Truth. Those who would silence Truth's voice are more destructive by far," a teacher reads aloud). Along with an infusion of high-camp fantasy, Hardinge firmly plants in the novel the heroine's serious love of reading, which informs nearly everything Mosca does ("I'd been hoarding words for years," she says in an introspective moment, "buying them from peddlers and carving them secretly into bits of bark so I wouldn't forget them"). And the setting is detailed and complex enough to inspire many sequels. Ages 10-up. (May) --Staff (Reviewed May 8, 2006) (Publishers Weekly, vol 253, issue 19, p66)
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/bookUI
145982
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Hardinge, Frances
Index
no index present
Intended audience
  • Grades 5 up
  • 1010L
Intended audience source
Lexile
Interest level
MG
Literary form
novels
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/minGradeLevel
  • 5
  • 9
Reading level
7.1
http://library.link/vocab/resourcePreferred
True
Series statement
Fly by night
Series volume
0001
Study program name
Accelerated Reader
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • Swindlers and swindling
  • Geese
  • Language and languages
  • Books and reading
  • Guilds
Target audience
pre adolescent
Label
Fly by night, Frances Hardinge
Instantiates
Publication
Copyright
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Dimensions
22 cm
Edition
First U.S. edition.
Extent
487 pages
Isbn
9780060876272
Lccn
2005020598
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
Other control number
9780060876272
Label
Fly by night, Frances Hardinge
Publication
Copyright
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Dimensions
22 cm
Edition
First U.S. edition.
Extent
487 pages
Isbn
9780060876272
Lccn
2005020598
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
Other control number
9780060876272

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