I enjoyed Gideon The Cutpurse. Gideon is a great character, though he turns out not to be the main character. I wonder if the author intended that when she started the book. After listening to the second volume, it felt like the author changed the focus away from Gideon to make this book the first of a series. Kate and Peter, two tweens from the present day, become the focal characters in both the present day and in the 18th century. By the end of the book, I wasn't sure why the title included Gideon. Gideon falls by the wayside; he is barely in the second book, even though the series is called the Gideon Trilogy. And based on a review I read, the American version of this book had a different title.
The time travel is well handled and the reader will buy into it. The fading in and out of time periods is an great twist. There are a few scenes of violence or death that could be too strong for very young listeners but this would be a great for family listening. The Tar Man, one of the bad guys, is wonderfully evil, though he might have a soft spot under all that meanness. The period details ground the listener in the story.
I found it difficult to believe the 18th century characters so easily accepted the concept of time travel. I would have thought at least one of them would have suspected magic or witchcraft. I wanted more questioning. And it didn't help that Kate and Peter ended up being taken in by upper middle class people in the 18th century. Maybe they should have struggled with daily life of the masses in the 1763. Hence the 4 stars instead of 5. Spoiler alert: this becomes a greater problem in the second volume when 18th century characters travel to the 21st century.
I am not sure if I will continue with the third volume of the trilogy. The second was a disappointment and I lost interest in Peter and Kate. I wanted more Gideon.
Gerard Doyle has become one of my favorite readers. His character voices are distinct and the listener can see his characters.
I loved this book. The reader is the best. Her voices are distinctive and embody the characters. My only quibble, and the reason I didn't give it a 5 overall, is that in order for the ending to make sense, the listener must have read Howl's Moving Castle first. And in a way, that was disappointing because I loved the Djin, the genie, and the carpet.
Wonder mashup of popular imagery from children's literature. Funny, frothy, and fresh. Pour it on.