Reader Reviewed Darkmouth by Shane Hegarty


Written by Shane Hegarty
Part of the Darkmouth Series

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The Lovereading4Kids comment

February 2015 Debut of the Month Darkmouth might appear to be a normal seaside town, but it’s really not the kind of place you’d want to go on holiday. In fact Darkmouth is a Blighted Village, one of the last places on Earth where there are gateways to other worlds, and all sorts of nasty things lurk behind those gates. Fortunately for us, 12 year old Finn, the last remaining Legend Hunter, is there to keep them out, and what he lacks in fighting skills, he more than makes up for with affability. Book one in a new series, Darkmouth is full of monsters, and some monster fights. It’s exciting, very readable and nicely mixes domestic drama in with the action, along with lots of humour. Fun to read aloud, anyone from the age of 9 to ninety could enjoy this, and probably will! ~ Andrea Reece

We have also heard that there are plans afoot to turn the book into a film that should appear sometime in 2017.

Reader Reviews

Kids love to read and so in addition to our Lovereading expert opinion some of our Lovereading4kids Reader Review Panel were also lucky enough to read and review this title.

  • Jemima Wilcox, age 10 - 'Finn is a Legend Hunter but he doesn't know it and the monsters are coming.' Read full review >
  • Charlie Swan, age 8 - 'a funny and adventurous book....  I enjoyed it very much.' Read full review >
  • Sylvie Williams, age 9 - 'an exciting story full of adventures...If you like Skulduggery Pleasant books then you will definitely like Darkmouth. I am looking forward to the next book in the series!' Read full review >
  • Nathan Gray, age 10 - 'Excellent book.' Read full review >
  • Eleanor Cookdale, age 10 - 'This book is brilliant! Perfect for boys and girls who like to laugh and be scared.' Read full review >
  • Evie Young, age 9 - 'An exciting adventure story about a legend hunter called Finn. I couldn't stop reading it and can't wait to see what happens next.' Read full review >
  • Rose Hopkins - 'This was the best book yet (I actually asked to stay in at school lunchtime to read it)...The book ends on a huge cliffhanger. I’m desperate for there to be a sequel.' Read full review >
  • Charlotte Cassidy, age 9 - 'Spine-chilling totally awesome page turner of a book.  I would recommend this brilliant book widely to all adventure lovers.' Read full review >
  • Joshua Zinkin, age 9 - 'I loved this book. It was gripping from the start and I wanted to read it all the time.This is an amazing book about monsters and humans.' Read full review >
  • Sam Harper, age 11 - 'The perfect combination of comedy and adventure which had me enthralled from the front cover to the final fight. A brilliant read!' Read full review >
  • Alice East, age 10 - 'Darkmouth is a book about creatures called "Legends" who attack villages. The only people who can stop them are Legend Hunters...This is a very funny book.' Read full review >


Darkmouth by Shane Hegarty

A monstrously funny debut from the new star of middle-grade adventure. There are towns where the border between our world and the world of monsters - properly called Legends - is thin. One of those towns is Darkmouth. There, our hero Finn is the son of the last remaining Legend Hunter - which means that one day soon he will be the last remaining Legend Hunter. Except...he's a bit rubbish at it. And in a spectacularly unfortunate coincidence, the terrifying leader of the monsters is in the midst of planning an all-out attack on Darkmouth.

****There is a classroom activity pack to accompany this book - great for teachers and parents to help children get the most out of this excellent read - download here.


Shane Hegarty explodes into the fantasy universe with Darkmouth. An incredible debut. Hilarious and exciting. Terrifying and heart-stopping. Everything a great fantasy series should be. The next big thing is here. Eoin Colfer, author of Artemis Fowl

Believe the hype. The relationship between the young hero and his father is touching and real. There are touches of Ghostbusters, along with some Bond-like gadgets, plus a rather Dickensian setting (the mist-swirling town of Darkmouth). This fantasy adventure is a stunning debut. Sarah Webb

Hegarty writes surely, unpretentiously and amusingly, drawing up beguiling characters and constructing a plot which simply skips along. Great for primary school children studying myths and legends. The Times

A cracking debut novel, packed with wonderful characters and imaginative gadgets, and the fast-paced action is underpinned with a dry wit. The first in the series should win an enthusiastic readership impatient for the next title. Daily Mail

About the Author

Shane Hegarty

Shane Hegarty was the Arts Editor of the Irish Times, but left to be a full time writer after DARKMOUTH sold in a frenzied auction at Bologna Book Fair in 2013. He lives with his family near Dublin.

Author photo by Róisín Macken-Price

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Book Info


416 pages
Interest Age: From 9


Shane Hegarty
More books by Shane Hegarty


HarperCollins Children's Books an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers

Publication date

29th January 2015




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