Wow! Wow! Wow! I'm going to get to the point: this is a masterpiece. 'The Longest Night of Charlie Noon' is an extraordinarily beautiful, sublime and jaw-dropping future classic. Christopher Edge is a master storyteller and this deserves to win all the big awards. There are simply not enough superlatives to express my feelings for this magnificent achievement.
I don't believe in outlining the whole plot. That would give so much enjoyment away. So here's the blurb by Nosy Crow:
'Secrets, spies or maybe even a monster… What lies in the heart of the wood? Charlie, Dizzy and Johnny are determined to discover the truth, but when night falls without warning they find themselves trapped in a nightmare. Lost in the woods, strange dangers and impossible puzzles lurk in the shadows. As time plays tricks, can Charlie solve this mystery and find a way out of the woods? But what if this night never ends…?'
From the very beginning this story charges off into the woods and it never lets up. It is impossible to put down. There are few books that just get on with an adventure so quickly and successfully, but like all the best fairy-tales, the characters here are thrown in the deep end while the reader bites their nails in wonder and fear. But this is no fairy-tale.
'The Longest Night of Charlie Noon' is both beautifully simple and surprisingly complex; much like a forest itself. It is a feat of imaginative interarboration. Both creepy and beautiful, it is an ode to nature of all kinds: the nature of the forest and the nature of the human mind. In this way, it should be heralded as a classic alongside Alan Garner's works. Children should read this to devour its language. Like 'The Lost Words' by Robert Macfarlane, this story opens up the imagination to the sheer beauty of nature. This is surely what the next generation need.
Thank you to Nosy Crow and Christopher Edge for sending me this advance copy. It is an honour. I really hope 'The Longest Night of Charlie Noon' wins big. Children will love it for generations to come.