Necropolis by Anthony Horowitz

Evil has been unleashed on the world and only five children – with special powers – can save it. Matt and the other three desperately need to find Scar, the final gatekeeper, who has been trapped in Hong Kong, where puddles of water turn into puddles of blood, where ghosts, demons and hideous creatures stalk the streets. Matt has no choice but to follow her. Now, both imprisoned, their only hope of survival is to reach a secret door in the Man Ho temple. But even if Scar can find her psychic power, it may already be too late.


If you’re what Stephen King refers to as a ‘constant reader’ then you’ll know when I find an author or series of books I tend to binge until the series runs out or the author is usurped by another hot find. Necropolis is the fourth in a series of YA novels written by Anthony Horowitz. So both an author to follow and a series (five books) to finish.

Usually by this stage novels in a series can spend quite some time finding a different way of filling in new people on what’s gone ahead and I feel maybe this book suffered a little from that problem. It didn’t detract much from the enjoyment, but it did lead me to do a bit of paragraph skipping, a practice that inevitably pulls you out of the story from time to time and you lose the immersive nature of reading. By about mid-way the distraction had dissolved and the new characters gripped me again and drew me into the world of the Gatekeepers.

I’m clearly not the target audience for YA (immaturity doesn’t count) but as I’ve said before I like to read these novels when the last thing I want is literary descriptive overload and I’m looking for entertainment. Horowitz’s YA novels are somewhere higher up on that spectrum because of the way his research includes just enough ‘fact’ to ground the fantastical fiction in sufficient amounts of possibility to help your brain accept the premise. This series is no exception and that’s partly what will help me stick with it through the next and final 700 page instalment. This is a good adventurous read with enough character depth to relate to them even if I could be their grandad!



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