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How to Catch a Bogle

Review

How to Catch a Bogle

written by Catherine Jinks with illustrations by Sarah Watts

Author Catherine Jinks has written over 30 books for middle grade readers, young adults and adults. Her most popular titles are The Evil Genius series and The Pagan Chronicles. She primarily writes historical fiction, sci-fi and murder mysteries. HOW TO CATCH A BOGLE is a tale of folklore and has a Victorian, fairy-tale flair.

"Many children become missing, one-by-one. Is it the great infestation of the Bogle that slinks around, snatching children in the night?"

Birdie is a 10-year-old girl who works for an old Bogle catcher named Alfred. Every time there is an eerie mysterious case of a child missing, the town calls upon Birdie and Alfred to makes things right again. Birdie’s tasks are nowhere near easy; she is outright used as “Bogle bait,” and Alfred only treats her as such. When the black, slimy, scaly, multi-legged creature comes out of its dank dwellings in chimneys, sewers and wells, it lurks about to feast on nearby children. The only two people who are ready, willing and brave enough to kill one are Birdie and Alfred. Most townsfolk believe that the Bogle is a myth, but some believe that it is the cause of why many children go missing in the night. In order to kill one, however, Birdie has to stand with her back towards the dark openings that lead to the Bogle’s hideouts. Then, she sings a beautiful song to lure the creature out, while Alfred pours a circle of salt around Birdie so she doesn’t get hurt. The Bogle tries to snatch Birdie, but Alfred makes sure it meets its demise in doing so. 

Many children become missing, one-by-one. Is it the great infestation of the Bogle that slinks around, snatching children in the night? It’s up to Birdie, Alfred and a few dedicated townspeople to solve this mystery. Jinks writes for all ages but her writing style for HOW TO CATCH A BOGLE is a little challenging for children under 10-years-old but well-suited for ages 12 and up. This book is an enjoyable read for those who adore fantasy and folklore.

Reviewed by Sheena Kowalski on September 6, 2013

How to Catch a Bogle
written by Catherine Jinks with illustrations by Sarah Watts