by | Read by Stephen Briggs

Published by HarperAudio

A storm. Rain-lashed city streets. A flash of lightning. A scruffy lad sees a girl leap desperately from a horse-drawn carriage in a vain attempt to escape her captors. Can the lad stand by and let her be caught again? Of course not, because he’s . . . Dodger. Seventeen-year-old Dodger may be a street urchin, but he gleans a living from London’s sewers, and he knows a jewel when he sees one. He’s not about to let anything happen to the unknown girl—not even if her fate impacts some of the most powerful people in England. From Dodger’s encounter with the mad barber Sweeney Todd to his meetings with the great writer Charles Dickens and the calculating politician Benjamin Disraeli, history and fantasy intertwine in a breathtaking account of adventure and mystery. Beloved and bestselling author Sir Terry Pratchett combines high comedy with deep wisdom in this tale of an unexpected coming-of-age and one remarkable boy’s rise in a complex and fascinating world.

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AudioFile Review


The setting is old London in the reign of Victoria. And our hero is 17-year-old Dodger. Dodger is a “tosher,” a boy who makes a meager living roaming the sewers under London’s streets searching for coins and treasures. One rain-soaked night he rescues a mysterious young woman from the clutches of deadly thugs. With the help of historical figures such as Charles Dickens and Benjamin Disraeli, the horse-drawn, gas-lit world of early Victorian London opens up to the listener. As always, longtime Pratchett narrator Stephen Briggs accentuates the tongue-turning phrases, gentle humor, and wide-eyed wonder of Pratchett’s writing. Pratchett appropriately calls this departure from his widely popular Discworld series a historical fantasy that mixes the oftentimes bleak facts of orphans and child labor with the magic of storybook endings. Briggs’s voice reflects this literary hybrid perfectly. B.P. 2013 Audies Finalist, SYNC 2015 © AudioFile 2012, Portland, Maine

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