The Secret Ministry of Frost by Nick Lake

The Secret Ministry of Frost

Written by Nick Lake

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The Lovereading4Kids comment

Hugely dramatic, this is a fast-paced fantasy thriller based on stories from Inuit folklore. After her explorer father disappears in the Arctic, Light finds herself in serious danger as she is drawn into folk stories of her forbears. Supported by Tupilak, her new strange new friend with a shark’s head, Light shows her courage by bravely stepping into the unknown world both to find her father and to play her role in the power struggle between Setna, the ruler of the sea and Frost, the cruel hearted King of the cold.


The Secret Ministry of Frost by Nick Lake

A half-Inuit albino and heir to a huge Northern Irish manor, Light has never exactly blended in. Since her father's mysterious disappearance in the Arctic, she's felt more alone than ever. Yet as she mourns for the father who was her whole family, Light starts to notice unexpected presences all around...Suddenly the mysterious world in which her father moved invades young Light's life with a bang.

The Inuit folklore she vaguely knows comes alive all around her; the inscrutable, violent and sometimes horrific beings of the North seem to believe she has a role to play and, along with her tattoed butler and their new shark-headed friend, Tupilak, Light is drawn into an age-old intrigue between Setna, the ruler of the sea and Frost, king of the cold. Soon Light is aboard an ice-breaker bound for Nunavut, having been promised help in searching for her father, now suspected of being stolen away by the cruel and heartless Frost. Yet she scarcely realises the power of those who have chosen her for their enemy - and a terrifying journey awaits her.

About the Author

Nick Lake

Nick Lake lives near Oxford with his wife and family. He works in publishing by day and writes books in every spare moment he can find. His powerful and moving novel In Darkness, about the Haitian earthquake, won the 2013 Michael L. Printz Award and was shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal. His second novel for Bloombury, Hostage Three, also received great acclaim.

Nick Lake Q&A:

Previous occupations:

Being a book editor. No one told me at school that there was a job where you got paid for being a fan of writers and writing.

High school and/or college:

I went to High School in Luxembourg, and I went to Oxford University after that for a degree and then a fairly pointless masters. In phonetics, of all things.

Name of your favourite composer or music artist?

I usually lie and go for something clever like Vertigo. But really it's True Romance.

I would use the word "busy" eight times.

What is your motto or maxim?
To paraphrase the existentialists - life is what you make it. Which amounts to a practical kind of karma, I suppose.

How would you describe perfect happiness?
A fire, a good chair and a new Stephen King book. Or the moment the soundchecks finish and the band take to the stage. Or sunset on the mountains, with weary feet, and the lights of a pub ahead. Or the sound of a breakbeat. Or a very sweet tea, anywhere in the Middle East, at any time of day.

What’s your greatest fear?
Not being good.

Which living person do you most admire?
Haruki Murakami. Stephen King. Anyone who works for Medecins sans Frontieres or Amnesty International.

What are your most overused words or phrases?

If you could acquire any talent, what would it be?
The abillity to play a musical instrument well. Also, the ability to speak all languages fluently.

What is your greatest achievement?
Meeting my wife.

If you could be any person or thing, who or what would it be?
I wouldn't mind being Simon Cowell. I could make The X-Factor go away. Not to mention R&B flavoured pop music.

What trait is most noticeable about you?
I have no idea. My hair? It's usually quite big, because I keep forgetting to have it cut. I look like the freakish son of Tom Hanks and David Hasselhoff.

Who is your favourite fictional hero?
Sally Lockhart.

Who is your favourite fictional villain?
Steerpike. (Also hero.)

If you could meet any historical character, who would it be and what would you say to him or her?
I'd like to meet Shakespeare and I'd ask him how to write better.

What is your favourite occupation, when you’re not writing?
Reading? Actually probably sleeping, to be honest.

What’s your fantasy profession?
Bestselling and universally admired author.

What 3 personal qualities are most important to you?
Compassion. Empathy. Humour.

If you could eat only one thing for the rest of your days, what would it be?
Chocolate, in any form.

What are your 5 favourite songs?

On Books and Writing:

Who are your favourite authors?
Haruki Murakami. Stephen King. Neil Gaiman. Margaret Atwood. Joan Didion. Ismail Kadare. Philip Reeve. Philip Pullman. Meg Rosoff.

What are your 5 favourite books of all time?

Tough one. I guess... Middlemarch; Coraline; For Whom the Bell Tolls; the collected works of Shakespeare... and Little, Big, by John Crowley - the single most unfairly overlooked, beautiful, miraculous and magical book I know.

Do you have one sentence of advice for new writers?
I wouldn't presume to think of myself as someone anyone might look to for advice! But I suppose I'd tell them to read as much as possible, in as many genres as possible.

What comment do you hear most often from your readers?
"You're very... imaginative aren't you." I think they mean I'm strange.

Nick Lake introduces There Will Be Lies:

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Book Info


320 pages


Nick Lake
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Simon & Schuster Ltd

Publication date

2nd March 2009




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