Black Heart (Vampirates) by Justin Somper

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Black Heart (Vampirates) by Justin Somper

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Category: Confident Readers
Rating: 4/5
Reviewer: Jill Murphy
Reviewed by Jill Murphy
Summary: The fourth in this crazily original adventure series featuring piratical vampires. The main plot arc gets moved on a little and there are all the usual high jinks. Fans will love it.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 416 Date: March 2009
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
ISBN: 1416901035

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A new ship of Vampirates is creating havoc on the oceans, so there's nothing for it but for Grac and Connor Tempest to get involved. While the athletic Connor does high seas battle with Sidorio, king of the Vampires, and the mysterious but equally wicked Lady Lola Lockwood, his geeky twin Grace does some more genealogical digging, meets their mother, and discovers the shocking truth about their real father's identity.

Kids are loving all things bitey these days, aren't they? But they can be a little too scary for some of the smaller ones. Not so Vampirates. These utterly lovable stories add some much more lighthearted shiver-me-timbering to the mix and the result is action-packed, page-turning drama sans nightmares. The Tempests, as twins, add a lot of interest - cleverly, for both boys and girls, and jocks and geeks - with their equally strong personalities, they both bring a great deal to the narrative table. Conor is sporty, courageous and outgoing, while Grace is sensitive, thoughtful and clever. Visually, they're both stunning with red hair and startling green eyes.

The stand-out part of Black Heart is definitely Lady Lola Lockwood, a deliciously badder than bad baddie. She actually keeps a winery of stored blood - a cellar of vintages! Ha. Otherwise, the family drama proceeds very nicely in the background, and this main plot arc fills in the breathing spaces - not that there are many - between the action very nicely.

This series will last for at least eight instalments and has sold more than quarter of a million copies so far. It's no surprise, as it ticks all the boxes. There's action aplenty, interesting central characters, outrageously naughty villains and an ongoing family mystery. What more could they want?

My thanks to the nice people at Simon & Schuster for sending the book.

If they love Vampirates, they might also enjoy Necropolis (Power of Five) by Anthony Horowitz and, of course, the inimitable Artemis Fowl.

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Buy Black Heart (Vampirates) by Justin Somper at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Black Heart (Vampirates) by Justin Somper at Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.
Buy Black Heart (Vampirates) by Justin Somper at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Black Heart (Vampirates) by Justin Somper at


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