Thomas Taylor: Mermedusa (Walker Books 2023)
Have you ever been to a small seaside town in autumn, after the tourists have left, you can no longer get ice cream and the cold winter winds are slowly blowing in? Then you may have already been to Eerie-on-Sea. Not many people visit here at this time. Even the locals don’t venture ashore once darkness descends. They are afraid of the local legends. Or rather from what the legends are about…
It’s the end of December in Eerie-on-Sea. Violet Parma came to town to find her lost parents exactly one year ago. That’s when their friendship began with Herbert Lemon, the Lost-and-Founder of the Grand Nautilus Hotel, and that’s when they started to unravel the legends surrounding the city on an adventurous journey. Now, more mysterious events are happening: a hypnotic eerie hum travels through the city walls, the Mermonkey breaks down, and to top it all off, paranormal podcasters arrived hungry for sensation.
This volume was the fifth and final book of the series, which connects the legends and characters of the previous stories to reveal the biggest and most dangerous secret of Eerie-on-Sea. Herbie and Violet’s archenemy, Sebastian Eels, is behind the events, but we learn a few things about him that may shed a different light on his previous actions. I really liked the story and the ending tied up all the loosing threads. I wonder what story the writer will come up with next!
Thomas Taylor grew up in Wales, always loved weird stories and drawing. Although there were many seafarers among his ancestors, he became an illustrator, as there were more cakes and less wet clothes in this profession. His first big illustration commission came from Bloomsbury Publishers: he had to design the cover of an unknown author’s first book. The author was J. K. Rowling. In the end, though, he chose to write. He currently lives with his family on the south coast of England and enjoys walking at the coast in search of treasure. Malamander was published this year in Hungarian under the title Malamandra.