The Box of Red Brocade (Chronoptika) by Catherine Fisher

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The Box of Red Brocade (Chronoptika) by Catherine Fisher

Category: Teens
Rating: 4.5/5
Reviewer: Jill Murphy
Reviewed by Jill Murphy
Summary: Jake's father is still lost in time. Venn's wife is still dead. Summer, the Queen of the Shee, still hasn't made Venn her husband. Sarah still hasn't prevented the destruction of the future by Janus. And the Scarred Man still hasn't done, well, whatever it is that he's trying to do. The Chronoptika, a mirror made of black obsidian and a time travel device, connects Jake, Venn, Sarah and the rest, but they all want different things from it. Can they all be satisfied? It doesn't look likely.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 400 Date: October 2013
Publisher: Hodder
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 1444912631

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Ok. Let's catch you up. Jake's father is still lost in time. Venn's wife is still dead. Summer, the Queen of the Shee, still hasn't made Venn her husband. Sarah still hasn't prevented the destruction of the future by Janus. And the Scarred Man still hasn't done, well, whatever it is that he's trying to do. The Chronoptika, a mirror made of black obsidian and a time travel device, connects Jake, Venn, Sarah and the rest, but they all want different things from it. Can they all be satisfied? It doesn't look likely.

The Box of Red Brocade opens as Jake journeys back to London during the Blitz. Confused and dazed in the aftermath of a bombing raid, Jake meets an eccentric old woman who passes him a clue. And three strange children offer him a sinister three-part prophecy. Two parts are swiftly revealed but what is the third? A box of red brocade? What does it hold? Will it help Jake find his father? Or contain the secret of destroying the obsidian mirror?

Oh, wow. I really thought this was a wonderful follow-up to The Obsidian Mirror. Second books in series are tricky but Fisher handles this one with great aplomb. Lots happens. Characters move forwards. The plot thickens with new issues and complications that I hadn't guessed at while reading book one. And now I can't wait to see what happens next. Perfect!

There are a great many plot threads to keep up with and I love the way that Fisher challenges her readers in this way. You'll have to concentrate hard to keep up with what is going on. The whole thing is a joyful puzzle combining complex storylines, great energy and diverse characters. Every reader will have a favourite from the enormous cast and, personally, I'm rooting for Gideon the changeling boy and Rebecca, the girl in love with the Scarred Man.

I love the genre-busting too. The Box of Red Brocade is essentially a time-slip adventure but it's also part-fantasy and part-sci fi with even a flavour of dystopia hinted at here and there in the descriptions of a future dominated by Janus. In this book, you can read about faeries and changelings, modern day kids and and mediaeval Italians afraid of the Black Death. What more could the keen reader want?!

Everything about The Box of Red Brocade screams quality and it comes highly recommended by us.

I think you'd also like Warriors of Ethandun by N M Browne - more time-slip adventure.

Buy The Box of Red Brocade (Chronoptika) by Catherine Fisher at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy The Box of Red Brocade (Chronoptika) by Catherine Fisher at Amazon.co.uk.


Buy The Box of Red Brocade (Chronoptika) by Catherine Fisher at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy The Box of Red Brocade (Chronoptika) by Catherine Fisher at Amazon.com.


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