The Toymaker Jeremy de Quidt Published David Fickling Books ISBN 978 0385 613583 The Toymaker is a deliciously dark story with many twists and turns that draw in the reader and inspire the imagination. The plot basically follows a race to uncover a secret but also describes a deadly battle between good and evil with some wonderful supernatural characters. These include the evil Dr Leiter, Marguerite the living doll with her pretty lips covering sharp needle-like teeth, and Mathias, an orphan boy living with Gustav, his grandfather, in a grim, rundown travelling circus. This is an atmospheric and sometimes dark read and when all is revealed at the end, author Jeremy de Quidt makes sure that readers close the book with a feeling of satisfaction. The revelations in the final chapters of the book are certainly worth waiting for and all the loose plot threads are tied up nicely. The Toymaker is a classy piece of storytelling and it is a pity that the text is peppered with unnecessary drawings that sometimes give away the facts before we get to them in the text. Who needs fussy illustrations in a story as good as this? De Quidt's storytelling skills certainly don't need any. The Toymaker is much better than the dull cover suggests. Pick it up, throw the cover away and enjoy a thrilling story that is highly original and very entertaining.