The Amulet of Kings (The Banned Underground book series) By Will Jones was a fascinating novel to devour. It’s pages are filled to bursting point with all manner of magic, Dwarves, Witches, Wizards, Trolls and oddly enough, pizza boxes. It’s not hyperbole to say that this book was a righteous laugh from the first word right up until the very last.
The story introduces us to two siblings, a brother and sister, who begin the tale by moving in with their aunt and uncle in the lake district while their mother is in hospital. Things quickly go wrong when yogurts begin sprouting arms and legs and attacking anyone and everyone in their path. An evil contingent of Wizards lay siege to our heroes and we are soon treated to a brilliant battle of magic.
In an attempt to escape the attacking forces the children stumble into Fungus the Bog Troll who leads them into through a network of ancient tunnels and into the largely deserted city of the Dwarves, a complaining and bitter old race who have spent too long in the gloomy depths of the Earth. It is here that the story really begins.
Before I go any further I have to address the elephant in the room. This book is very Terry Pratchett-esq, from its plot-line, its characters and to their dialogue, this is a novel that is clearly inspired by the late great fantasy comedy king. And that’s not a bad thing of course, I’m a huge Pratchett fan – keep an eye open for an epic Pratchett undertaking coming soon – and many of the jokes and word plays found in The Amulet of Kings are just as good as those that can be found on the majestic surface of Disc World. There are of course a few jokes that don’t land particularly well, mostly thanks to some poor build up or just plain old bad delivery, but those I found to be in the minority.
Where Jones has differed greatly from Pratchett however is his novels placement in the real world. From Manchester to the Lake District this novel takes you on a wild journey through the English countryside. A countryside filled with witty Wizards, jazz loving Bog Trolls and the odd freaky Witch.
The books plot is pretty rudimentary, you won’t be surprised when reading this one, but with the focus being on well done comedy it doesn’t need to be a complex read. All The Amulet of Kings needs to do is entertain and delight the read, and that is two things it does very well indeed.
This is a book for anyway who would just like a nice simple read to make them laugh and to while away a few hours. It would be a great book to take away on holiday and read besides the sea or pool, where the humour and plain old silliness will keep you chuckling away right up until its grand finale.
If you’d like to experience this brilliant ride for yourself you can get The Kings Amulet on Amazon.