The Whatnot is the acclaimed international bestseller and sequel to Stefan Bachmann's riveting debut novel, The Peculiar, which Publishers Weekly called "an absolute treat for readers of any age," and which the Los Angeles Times compared to "Dostoevsky's Crime and Punishment, Charles Dickens's A Tale of Two Cities, and more recent classics, such as J. K. Rowling's Harry Potter and Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events."
Twelve-year-old Pikey Thomas is missing an eye, a family, and friends of any sort. One day, running from bigger boys set on bullying him, Pikey finds himself in front of a grand, beautiful house. There he meets and helps a black-winged faery who is injured. It's a small gesture of kindness and bravery in steam-powered Victorian London, where faeries, now banned, are on the run or imprisoned; where the human armies are preparing for war; and where the changeling Bartholomew Kettle, aided by Arthur Jelliby, still searches for his missing sister, Hettie. This is the epic, dark, imaginative, unforgettable, and ultimately hopeful sequel to Stefan Bachmann's acclaimed debut novel, The Peculiar.
"An enthralling read . . . Bachmann combines the pleasures of a Dickensian cast of characters with the eldritch qualities of British faerie lore and adds a touch of steampunk to entice readers into an alternate universe in which the English are on the verge of war with the fay. The breathtaking beauty of his prose is coupled with a plot that also leaves his audience breathless."—School Library Journal
From the Back Cover:
Oh, the Sly King, the Sly King, in his towers of ash and wind.
Pikey Thomas doesn't know how or why he can see the changeling girl. But there she is. Not in the cold, muddy London neighborhood where Pikey lives. Instead, she's walking through the trees and snow of the enchanted Old Country or, later, racing through an opulent hall. She's pale and small, and she has branches growing out of her head. Her name is Henrietta Kettle.
Pikey's vision, it turns out, is worth something. Worth something to Hettie's brother—a brave adventurer named Bartholomew Kettle. Worth something to the nobleman who protects him. And Pikey is not above bartering—Pikey will do almost anything to escape his past; he'll do almost anything for a life worth living.
The faeries—save for a mysterious sylph and a mischievous cobble faery or two— have been chased out of London. They've all gone north. The army is heading north, too. So Pikey and Bartholomew follow, collecting information, piecing together clues, searching for the doorway that will lead them to Hettie.
The Whatnot is the enthralling, surprising, and unforgettable companion to Stefan Bachmann's internationally bestselling debut novel The Peculiar.
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