Reviews of The Broken King by Philip Womack

"[Womack] does conjure an eerie poetry of the subconscious, a kind of Alice in Terrorland." Suzi Feay, The Financial Times

"A magical story full of powerful images and unexpected consequences." Julia Eccleshare, Lovereading4Kids

" The Broken King is superbly written and totally gripping, and I want the next bit now." Kate Saunders, Literary Review.
Advance praise for The Broken King by Philip Womack

"Like Alan Garner, Philip Womack takes ancient fairy-tales about searching for a child kidnapped by dark magic, and turns it into a haunting adventure exploring love, courage, fear and friendship. Written with sensitivity, intelligence and conviction, it's the kind of classic story readers can't get enough of." - Amanda Craig

"A cracking pace, enigmatic characters and terrifying adversaries will have you clamouring for the next in the series.- Sarah Naughton, author of the Costa Award Shorlisted The Hanged Man Rises

Reviews for The Liberators by Philip Womack

'Mr Womack's writing put me in mind of Saki, or a cheerier M R James'. Author Philip Reeve.

'On the surface, it's a fast-moving, exciting adventure, with well-drawn characters that you care about - and intriguing sinister baddies,whose seductive charm is irresistible. It would make a wonderful film - the riot on Oxford Street, and the final scenes in the National Gallery make great use of London as a setting. But it goes so much deeper. ' Author Keren David.

“With its dramatic opening chase through the London Underground, THE LIBERATORS hurtles the reader full-pelt into the kind of thriller that 10 to 13 year-olds – boys in particular – love and parents approve of because the excitement and gore is underpinned by Greek mythology and topical references to a global financial meltdown. Womack’s blend of action and philosophising will ensure a big following.” Dinah Hall, The Sunday Telegraph

'What is so rewarding about Womack’s book is that the quality of the writing is good enough to slow you down. From the “pall of fear” that “hung over London as its citizens mobbed around, uncertain of the dangers that hid in their midst” to the conversations between children and adults, the pace and mystery are underscored by a poet’s imagination. This is a proper, copper-bottomed magical story of the kind once written by Alan Garner and John Masefield, and it uses the sinister side of Greek myth with brio.' Amanda Craig, The Times

'The Liberators has some wonderful set pieces ... It also delves stylishly into Greek mythology. Most of all this is elegant prose, mixing wit with some genuinely dark elements. Womack is an author to be watched.' Marcus Sedgwick, Literary Review

'Womack writes with great skill, empathy and verve, and this book will leave 10- to 13-year-olds mesmerised' Judith Woods, The Daily Telegraph

‘A page-turner . . . Womack sets his story against a background of the current fear of terrorism and the panic of the financial meltdown, merging the very real world with the fantastical with great success’ The Daily Mail

'Womack writes in an accessible, intelligent and addictive style, bringing his landscapes to life with colourful and clever descriptive phrases . . . This would be a recommended read for any forward-looking and perceptive young adult, as it will pose questions and points for further discussion regarding both the fantasy, cult and mythology themes that run throughout the book’ Sci Fi Now

'Gripping and powerful...Hugely enjoyable, intelligent and exciting' --The School Librarian

'A rollercoaster of a read from beginning to end!' --Bookfest

`Skilfully wrought, a perfectly intriguing blend of magic and realism and lots and lots of fighting, which would suit a boy of about 10'

--The Daily Telegraph, Children's Books of the Year 2010

`With elements of John Masefield's The Box of Delights, it reveals a weird and wonderful imagination'

--The Times, Children's Books of the Year 2010

A superlatively well-written supernatural thriller for 11-plus readers involving a deadly Dionysian cult bent on taking over London high society, The Times, Books of the Summer 2010

Womack brings Greek myth to life with this tale of two sinister brothers who unleash the spirit of Dionysus in modern London. The superficial attraction and ultimate catastrophe of total licence are cleverly evoked as young Ivo Moncrieff battles to restore Apollonian order. Financial Times Books of the Summer 2010.

`The Liberators is a modern supernatural thriller with all the required pace, tension and question marks to keep readers turning the pages' --South China Morning Post

‘He felt in a choking way that a net was being drawn around him, that the dim, vague future was forming into a clearly defined and dangerous path.’ This is the realisation that strikes 13-year-old Ivo Moncrieff soon after he has experienced something very unexpected and sinister on his way to stay with his London aunt and uncle. It is the London of our own time and by no means the least of Womack’s achievements in this ambitious and intelligent novel is to sketch in, as background, the political and economic ethos of contemporary Britain. The foreground, however, will probably be of more immediate interest to young readers, many of whom should be kept on the edge of their seats by a narrative which, early on, is dominated by a dismembered corpse and soon develops into a fascinating exploration of the type of society endorsed by the ‘liberators’ of the title, ‘untrammelled by restraints’ where we could ‘act on every impulse, every desire, without fear, without consequence’. The characterisation is rich and entertainingly varied, with some individuals who would not be out of place in an Iris Murdoch novel: the arty pretensions of Ivo’s aunt and uncle are tellingly skewered. This, in spite of a few patches of over-writing, is the sort of young adult novel that gives the genre a good name.'  Books for Keeps.

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