“Teo could have sworn that the carrot-mermaid flexed her tail and plunged her little hand inside a smelly Gorgonzola. ‘Tyromancy, ye know,’ remarked the mermaid. ‘The Ancient Art of Divination by Cheese.'”
The Undrowned Child by Michelle Lovric is one for girls with a taste for water and curry with a kick. (Don’t worry, this doesn’t mean you have to be someone who likes to eat their dinner in the bath- that wouldn’t be weird at all…)
It’s 1899, it’s Venice and Teo is an eleven year old with a party trick of reading upside down. (Now that’s skill!) Hit on the head with a book dedicated to studying mermaids- isn’t it annoying when you can’t read some books just because they don’t exist?- Teo is given The Key to the Secret City– a book- yes, another!- that leads her into an inbetween world where mermaids talk like sailors- there is no swearing to be had from these lucious ladies- and a time old story of the imfamous Bajamonte Tiepolo who failed to take over Venice due to getting hit on the head with a baking utensil. (Of all the luck.) With a little help from Renzo, a Venetian boy with very good taste in clothing- (and a straight one at that)- Teo must help to save Venice before it is drowned by whatever seems to be lurking below the water…
There is also a talking cat. What more could you possibly want in a book?
With a style of writing I can’t possibly liken to anything else I have read, Lovrik has begun a new obsession within me. The Teo Obsession- to be enjoyed with a nice cup of tea. (Or curry.)