Darke by Angie Sage


Written by Angie Sage

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Selected by our Editorial Experts

This wonderful series featuring a boy called Septimus Heap is perfect for boys in particular to get their teeth into. As in the Harry Potter titles we see Septimus a year older with each new book. This is the 6th one and Septimus is on the threshold of his fourteenth birthday, which falls on the shortest day of the year. While everyone celebrates and the Castle is lit with traditional candles, Septimus has greater concerns on his mind. He has finally reached the period in his Apprenticeship known as Darke Week.

We asked a number of teenagers to review the first in the Septimus Heap series - Magyk. Click here to read what they thought!

The complete list of books in this internationally bestselling series are...

Septimus Heap 1: Magyk

Septimus Heap 2: Flyte

Septimus Heap 3: Physik

Septimus Heap 4: Queste

Septimus Heap 5: Syren

Septimus Heap 6: Darke

Septimus Heap 7: Fyre

Visit the special Septimus Heap website for games, activities and more information on the series wwww.septimusheap.com


Darke by Angie Sage

On the shortest day of the year, as the Castle is lit with candles and everyone prepares to celebrate, Wizard Apprentice Septimus Heap marks his fourteenth birthday. He has reached a new stage in his Apprenticeship: Darke Week. Awe-inspiring, terrifying, unbelievably important, Septimus's future will depend on what happens during this week. He chooses a dangerous mission to restore his good friend Alther from Banishment. But as he embarks on this trial, something Darke and terrible engulfs the Castle. Septimus and his friends are about to face their most perilous challenge yet ...


Praise for Septimus Heap: Warm, funny and humane, Sage takes care with the destiny of even her smallest characters, and is a real discovery

Sage navigates her complex setting with suspenseful and well-structured plotlines ... These books open an array of dazzling worlds. It's worth hoping aboard this bus, and I'm eagerly waiting at the stop

Praise for Magyk: Wonderfully imaginative ... Children of all ages will relish this Waterstone's Guide to Kid's Books Praise for Flyte: An immensely powerful and imaginative adventure, full of surprises, with good and bad magic and it moves at a rattling pace ... You will not want to leave this imaginary world The School Librarian

About the Author

Angie Sage

Angie Sage grew up in the Thames Valley, London and Kent. She went to Art School in Leicester where she studied Graphic Design and Illustration. After college she started illustrating books and then progressed to writing, first toddler books, later chapter books and now, Septimus Heap. She lives overlooking a creek in Cornwall and loves sailing her boat, Muriel, and all things to do with the sea. She has two grown up daughters.

What are your favourite children’s books and why?
The book I liked best when my children were little was Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak — because of the wonderful pictures and dreamlike way it portrays Max and his day. Hairy McLary — Lynley Dodd — because of the fun illustrations and wonderful rhymes. Almost anything by Janet and Allan Ahlberg, although Burglar Bill was a favourite. The books I liked to read when I was young and still like to read sometimes are — Winnie The Pooh and House at Pooh Corner by AA Milne — I love all the characters and the relationships between them. Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Graham — again, lovely characters and relationships, plus great atmosphere and funny too.

All the books by E Nesbit — very atmospheric and a lovely feeling for history. Elizabeth Gouge — I remember the beginning of one with a character called Miss Heliotrope and a little tower bedroom with a fire in the fireplace and a jar of biscuits beside the bed. It was a simply magical atmosphere.
Enid Blyton — I loved all the Famous Five stories. John Wyndham’s Sci Fi books were great.

Who are your favourite children’s authors and why?
E.Nesbit — although the books are all a bit old fashioned now they are full of magic. The children are all resourceful and strong.
Jacqueline Wilson — lots of real life stuff which is always manages to be reassuring, however bad it gets.
Roald Dahl — great stories, nicely subversive
JK Rowling — Harry Potter is a wonderful world to go into.
…and lots more that I can’t think of now but will remember after I’ve sent this off.

Who or what was your biggest influence in deciding to become a writer?
I think my biggest influence has been all the wonderful books I have read over the years- they made me want to have a go at writing my own.

What inspired you to write your latest book?
I wanted to create a whole world where things were familiar to us, but magical and different too. I have had the character of Septimus in my head for ages and it was not until Marcia Overstrand appeared on the scene that everything came together.

What’s the best thing you’ve ever written?
Septimus Heap.

Is there any particular ritual involved in your writing process (favourite pen, lucky charm, south-facing window)?
No. But I do need peace and quiet. I write on a laptop and I find I don't get so many ideas if I use a pen and paper. I just end up with loads of crossings out and silly doodles.

What is your favourite colour?
Blue. But recently I have begun to think that pink is not so bad after all.

What is your favourite food and worst?
I really like fresh cherries in the summer. And I hate aniseed. Yuk.

Do you have a pet?
No. But I still miss my tortoise who wandered off many years ago. The nearest thing I have to a pet now are two ducks who visit most evenings in the summer for bread and fresh water.

What subject did you enjoy most as school... and least?
I liked English the best, and Art too. I loathed maths, it just seemed so weird…

What is your favourite film?
I don't know really. I like films when I see them and then forget all about them afterwards. Dark Star — a funny Sci Fi film with a pet alien that looks like a tomato comes to mind.

What music do you like?
Blues, Rock and Roll played loud and boogie woogie piano. Elton John. I love live music.

If you hadn't been an author, what would you have been?
Not sure. There are lots of things I would have liked to have tried, like sailing round the world or building houses.

How long does it take you to write a book?
Septimus Heap: Magyk took about a year. And the second book, Flyte .. will have taken about a year too. Then I need a bit more time after that to go back to it and check it out again.

How long have you been writing books?
About 20 years. I started writing toddler books and they just got longer … and longer.

Where do you get your ideas from?
They all turn up when I start writing. Once I know who the characters are, and where they are, they kind of take over and then things happen to them. I don't really know where my ideas come from. It is all very odd when you stop and think about it. Best not to, as my granny used to say.

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Book Info


464 pages
Interest Age: From 9


Angie Sage
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Bloomsbury Publishing PLC

Publication date

5th July 2012




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