Skulduggery Pleasant (#1)
Meet the great Skulduggery Pleasant: wise-cracking detective, powerful magician, master of dirty tricks and burglary (in the name of the greater good, of course).
Oh yeah. And dead.
Then there's his sidekick, Stephanie. She's… well, she's a twelve-year-old girl. With a pair like this on the case, evil had better watch out…
“So you won't keep anything from me again?"
He put his hand to his chest. "Cross my heart and hope to die."
"Okay then. Though you don't actually have a heart," she said.
"And technically, you've already died."
"I know that too."
"Just so we're clear."
Stephanie's uncle Gordon is a writer of horror fiction. But when he dies and leaves her his estate, Stephanie learns that while he may have written horror, it certainly wasn't fiction.
Pursued by evil forces intent on recovering a mysterious key, Stephanie finds help from an unusual source – the wisecracking skeleton of a dead wizard.
When all hell breaks loose, it's lucky for Skulduggery that he's already dead. Though he's about to discover that being a skeleton doesn't stop you from being tortured, if the torturer is determined enough. And if there's anything Skulduggery hates, it's torture… Will evil win the day? Will Stephanie and Skulduggery stop bickering long enough to stop it? One thing's for sure: evil won't know what's hit it.
Winner of Red House Children's Book Awards: Overall Winner 2008 and Red House Children's Book Awards: Books for Older Readers 2008 and Bord Gais Energy Irish Book Awards: Book of the Decade 2000-2009. Shortlisted for Dublin Airport Authority Irish Children's Book of the Year Award: Senior 2008.
'Hugely enjoyable -- a thrill-a-minute adventure.' Jonathan Stroud
'It's exciting, pacy, nicely handled and fun. I sincerely hope Landy revisits these characters.' Philip Ardagh, Guardian
'A gripping debut.' Phil Hogan, Observer
'Skulduggery Pleasant serves up a thoroughly satisfying blend of humour, magic and adventure. Once you've met Stephanie and Skullduggery, you'll be clamouring for a sequel.' Rick Riordan
"A remarkably accomplished debut with wonderful dialogue." Robert Dunbar, Irish Times
"[Landy's] fight scenes are perfectly pitched. His characters are exceptionally well drawn and delightfully colourful! Reading [this book] is like riding a rollercoaster." Irish Independent
"Landy's witty style will win him fans of all ages! With writing of this standard, a rattling plot and definite potential for cross-over appeal, it's a good job Harry's [Potter] resigning before he's forcibly retired." Irish Mail on Sunday
"Humour and magic combine in this thrilling adventure." Waterstone's Books Quarterly
"People in the book world are raving about this book." Glasgow Herald "It's pacy, it's funny, it's irreverent. The relationship between Skulduggery and Stephanie is tremendously strong. Stephanie is a splendid character -- blunt, logical and outspoken! We enjoyed Skulduggery Pleasant. Muchly. Roll on volume two!" The Book Bag
"A rip-roaring adventure." Irish Sunday Independent "Full of black humour, super powers, mysteries, murder and mayhem." Carousel
Derek Landy lives near Dublin. Before writing his children's story about a sharply-dressed skeleton detective, he wrote the screenplays for a zombie movie and a murderous horror film. "I think my career-guidance teacher is spinning in her grave," he says, "or she would be if she were dead."