Review Blog

Jul 09 2019

Sea-ing is believing by Steven Butler

cover image

Illus. by Steven Lenton. Nothing to See Here Hotel. Simon and Schuster, 2019. ISBN: 9781471178733.
(Age 9+)Recommended. Themes: Fantasy, Ghosts, Hotels, Secrets, Strange fantasy creatures. The Nothing to See Here Hotel is more than unusual - it is positively disorderly and rambunctious! And if you thought rambunctious was an unusual word, 'you ain't seen nothing yet'! Steven Butler has created a spirited (in more ways than one) and rollicking fantasy tale with strange creatures and more created words than you can throw a ghost at! In the third book of the series involving the 'hidden' Hotel that caters for magical creatures of all variabilities and quirks (some bad and some good), the return of their feted ancestor Abe as a ghostly apparition presents all sorts of interesting questions. He also reveals the grand Ballroom which has been magically missing and presents all sorts of astounding possibilities and there is an amazing ride to get there. The drama unfolds when things are uncovered that suggest that all is not what it seems.
The quirkiness of this book and the array of weird and wonderful creatures will be enjoyable for young readers . . . it is a literary roller-coaster with exploding and fantastical creatures dropping from all angles to impact the passage of the story. The explosion of created words (reminiscent of the BFG's classic vocabulary) is also immensely entertaining in an explodiferous and confusaplonking way! Illustrations by Steven Lenton help to reveal what the imagination cannot quite fathom.
Carolyn Hull

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