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The class book review: The Shadow Keeper, by Abi Elphinstone

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Title: The Shadow Keeper
Author: Abi Elphinstone

Publisher: Simon & Schuster Children’s UK

Teacher review

“Our world is full of magic, Moll.”

These words are uttered by Cinderella Bull, a wise old sage, and just one of a number of characters determined to help Moll, our stubborn, brave and determined heroine, on her way to find the Amulet of Truth.

And, from the breathless opening to the thrilling conclusion, The Shadow Keeper takes the reader on a blistering and bold adventure full of relentless action, through a world that is certainly magical. Here nothing is as it seems, fantastical creatures lie in wait to help and hinder Moll on her quest, and danger lurks around every corner.

Fortunately, Moll is supported by a cast of friends, companions and advisers to help her fight the enemies who are trying to prevent her from reaching the Amulet of Truth.

This rollicking yarn offers an escape into an alternative universe of wildcats, owls, mer-creatures and smugglers. Here, bravery, intelligence and – above all – friendship will be tested to the limit.

I would suggest that this story is more suited to a young (key stage 2) audience, but could be enjoyed by anyone who is prepared to escape into a fantasy world of laughter, suspense and action, where destiny is waiting to be fulfilled.

Only the forces of darkness stand in Moll’s way. The magic will be needed now more than ever…

Gerry Archer is an English teacher at Bay House School.

Pupil reviews

The Shadow Keeper is a very descriptive and imaginative book that has a lot of interesting concepts in it.

I found the book so hard to put down that it was impossible to eat my dinner!

Though, if I had to find a fault with it, it would have to be that I think it may be suited for a younger audience, due to the fact that older pupils tend to believe a little less easily in the kind of magical creatures and magical world that this book depicted.

Despite this, the book was an interesting one that had believable, realistic characters that you could connect with.

Natalie .E. Watford (Year 7)


The Shadow Keeper is a very descriptive book that will leave any reader on the edge of their seat.

The way the writer, Abi Elphinstone, brings the main character, Moll, and her gang to life makes you want to read on. It is amazing how much a book can make you feel you are glued to it!

Through the main character we see that some people who aren’t always the greatest of friends and have their ups and downs can mean so much to each other. This can really mean a lot to a reader, especially if they are a kid themselves.

The book is long, but it is deep and a very enjoyable, adventurous read.

Jack Pullen (Year 7)

If you or your class would like to write a review for TES, please contact Adi Bloom, on

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