Title: Mister Creecher
Author: Chris Priestley
Publication Date: 1 March 2012
Source: Review Copy
Synopsis from Goodreads
Billy is a street urchin, pickpocket and petty thief. Mister Creecher is a monstrous giant of a man who terrifies all he meets. Their relationship begins as pure convenience. But a bond swiftly develops between these two misfits as their bloody journey takes them ever northwards on the trail of their target …Victor Frankenstein.
Friendship, trust and betrayal combine to form a dangerous liaison in this moving and frightening new book from Chris Priestley.
REVIEW BY ANDY – THE PEWTER WOLF
I want to quickly thank Emma for asking me to take part in her Classic Carnival. Always fun to take part in these after the amount of books and recommendations you give me, Emma. (My pleasure Andy I like to share)
In London 1818, Billy is many things. Street urchin, pick pocket, petty thief. So, when he is attacked by another, he is saved by a giant of a man who he names Mister Creecher. When Mister Creecher offers Billy a job, Billy takes it, purely as Mister Creecher promises to protect him. It was a deal of pure convenience. But the more time they spend together, they become friends as Billy follows Creecher’s target… one Victor Frankenstein.
Now, I have to admit something before I go on. First, I have never read Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, so I can’t turn round and go “This happens alongside Frankenstein like a companion novel.”. It was after I read the book and reading the Book’s extras did I go “Oh, so you could read them side-by-side… Ok!”
My view on this book: I didn’t click with it. I just didn’t warm to this story, I’m afraid. I think it’s mainly because of the writing style for this book. It was trying so hard to fit the time period that it was jarring for me as a modern day reader to click with it.
Another problem I had was the characters. We were meant to be on Billy and Mister Creecher’s side, rooting for them to succeed. But I didn’t. I never had that connection to the characters that made me root for them. For me, this is a big thing. If I connect to a character – whether they be a hero of the story of the anti-hero – then I will be rooting for them or I would understand what has motivated them to do what they are doing.
However, with me going a bit negative on this book, I did like the subtle hints in this book. When Billy meet Mary Shelley and her husband, and then the twist in the final chapter that connects Frankenstein to another classic … I like these tiny things.
But the story on the whole wasn’t my cup of tea. It was a struggle for me and when you threaten to stab it with a very sharp knife, that’s not a good sign… But because I found it a struggle doesn’t mean you will and I hope that, if this does interest you, you would read it and form your opinions on the book.