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The Clockwork Sparrow meets Downton Abbey The city of Yorke is in a panic. There's been a murder! Is an ancient ghost-hound called the Barghest on the loose? ROSE RAVENTHORPE, her friend Orpheus and the secret society of butlers search for clues in the dark, eerie skitterways, on the mist-covered moors, and atop the ancient walls of the city. Rose believes that the villain is human, and she's determined to prove it. There's no sweeping this crime under the carpet...
In a nutshell: magical crime drama with orphans, chimney sweeps and secret societies! Rose Raventhorpe is a girl with a talent for solving mysteries. When she hears that a young orphan has gone missing, she’s determined to find out what’s going on. In this she is helped by her butler Heddsworth, a member of a secret society of butlers, and just the kind of right hand man you need, and hindered by her ghastly cousin Herbert, who is set on one day marrying Rose, and replacing Heddsworth with his own butler too. The plot moves along at a cracking pace as the mystery unfolds, the setting is a wonderfully atmospheric and there are some great characters to meet. This will appeal to fans of Katherine Woodfine’s The Sinclair’s Mysteries series and Patricia Elliott’s Connie Carew books. ~ Andrea Reece
A Julia Eccleshare Pick of the Month March 2017 Fun to read, this is a sprightly told tale of murder and trickery with a twisty plot and a cast of unlikely characters led by the smart and determined Rose Raventhorpe. Butlers are being murdered in Yorke and when one of them is Rose’s own beloved butler Argyle she knows she must begin to investigate. Especially as the black cats from the city’s walls are beginning to disappear too. Are the two facts related? Soon Rose is caught up in following the trails and finding out a great deal about the city’s butlers that she had never expected. ~ Julia Eccleshare The author, Janine Beacham: ‘I am thrilled that Butlers and Black Cats has found a home with Little, Brown Books for Young Readers. I’ve dreamed of being published since the age of five, so it doesn’t get better than this.’ Julia Eccleshare's Picks of the Month for March 2017 Jellicle Cats by T.S. Eliot and Arthur Robins William Bee's Wonderful World of Trucks by William Bee The Story of the Dancing Frog by Quentin Blake George's Marvellous Experiments inspired by Roald Dahl and illustrated by Quentin Blake My Name is Victoria by Lucy Worsley Many Moons by Remi Courgeon Freddie Mole, Lion Tamer by Alexanda McCall Smith Black Cats and Butlers by Janine Beacham Triangle by Mac Barnett and Jon Klassen