One night when Liza went to bed, Patrick was her chubby, stubby, candy-grubbing and pancake-loving younger brother, who irritated and amused her both, and the next morning, when she woke up, he was not.
When Liza’s brother Patrick’s soul has been taken by the Spindlers, her mother doesn’t believe Liza. Liza is told to stop telling stories. Convinced that Patrick is in very real danger, Liza takes off for Below in an effort to locate the Spindlers’ nests, and save her brother. Along the way she meets a most unusual rat named Mirabella who promises to guide Liza to her brother. Liza has no choice but to trust this rat and sets off on a quest to save her brother.
Readers who enjoyed the Gregor the Overlander series by Suzanne Collins will enjoy this book.
246 pages Ages 8-13
Recommended by: Alice Cyphers, Librarian, Pennsylvania USA
Read alikes: Serafina and the Black Cloak (has the same element of darkness, edgy)
Haven’t we all fantasized about having a younger brother or sister carried off, never to return? Of course, we do love them, but surely everyone has once or twice wondered if life wouldn’t be a little quieter and a bit easier with them gone, or at least toned down a few notches. Liza is nicer than most of us; she actually notices that something is wrong with her little brother Patrick. His eyes stop gleaming, he’s too polite and he seems a tiny bit, well, evil. No question, his soul has been stolen by the scary Spindlers, who live in the dark world Below. It’s up to Liza and her new bestie Mirabella to save Patrick.
Only problem? Well, the Spindlers are truly evil -- giant, skittery spiders with human hands on the end of each of their eight legs. Oh, and another thing, Mirabella is a big rat with a wig and a very weak grasp on fashion. And can you, or should you, ever really count on a rat to do the stand-up thing? Along the way, Liza and Mirabella face many dangers, armed only with a broom and their wits. If you like imaginary worlds mixed with just a touch of unsettling evil and want your fantasy books to wrap up at the end and not continue on and on with more and more sequels, The Spindlers might be a great choice for you.
Recommended by: Susan Harari, Librarian, Massachusetts USA
Liza feels a dread come over her when she sees her brother Patrick at the breakfast table. Liza cannot describe the difference but she knows the boy at the table is a fake. She cannot tell her mother who would only scold her for making up stories. If only Anna was not away at college she would know how to help Patrick. Anna taught Liza everything she knows about the Spindlers so Liza will have to take it upon herself to save Patrick's soul. Did Patrick forget to say the magic words Anna had taught them to keep them safe while they slept? Liza finally gathers her courage and enters the basement that takes her to the below world where she can find her brother. Liza comes across a Rat named Mirabella who wears makeup, a grass skirt and a wig. Mirabella helps Liza with all the shortcuts below to reach the nest of the Spindlers. Liza will find out if Mirabella is a trustworthy friend or just a rat that cannot be trusted. Through the adventures below Liza teaches Mirabella and the reader what true friendship is.
Recommended by: Anna Pelio LMS, New York USA
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