Rating: 4 Stars ★★★★☆
They had tried to destroy the Will, but that proved to be beyond their power.
Arthur Penhaligon is not supposed to be a hero. He is, in fact, supposed to die an early death. But then his life is saved by a key shaped like the minute hand of a clock.
Arthur is safe – but his world is not. Along with the key comes a plague brought by bizarre creatures from another realm. A stranger named Mister Monday, his avenging messengers with bloodstained wings, and an army of dog-faced Fetchers will stop at nothing to get the key back – even if it means destroying Arthur and everything around him.
Desperate, Arthur ventures into a mysterious house – a house that only he can see. It is in this house that Arthur must unravel the secrets of the key – and discover his true fate.
This book was a lot of fun to read, mainly because of the worldbuilding. Our main antagonist is called Mister Monday, he has a Noon, a Dawn and a Dusk. They live in an enourmous House that is full of weird bureaucracy and have usurped the Will of the Architect.
The keypad beeped and Noon whirled. His wings exploded out behind and above him. Huge, feathery wings that had once been white and lustrous but now were stained with patches of something dark and horrid, something that might even be dried blood.
Arthur’s life changes when he is given the minutehand of a clock by Mister Monday. He is supposed to die of an asthma attack soon after, but the minutehand saves him. It it then that he is chosen to be the heir to the House, supposed to fight against Mister Monday and his minions to get the hourhand.
The only ones on his side are a girl called Suzy, abducted years ago by the Piper, and the first sentences of the Will made manifest in the form of a small green frog. Oh, and at the same time, a plague brought in from the House threatens to kill everyone Arthur loves. So… just an ordinary Monday.
It’s the first in the series and it suffers a bit from too much explaining. The House is a confusing place and as much information about it as possible is crammed into a few pages.
However, because it is a fascinating world full of fun (if slightly one-dimensional) characters, it doesn’t matter much.
A fast-paced adventure set in an interesting world.